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What have you done since graduating and where are you now?
Since graduating in May 2013 I have moved back to my hometown in the Chicago suburbs and work as a teacher. I currently teach preschool at Kiddie Academy in Bolingbrook, Illinois. I teach 3-year-olds the foundations of learning in reading, mathematics, science, art, music, and social skills.
How did RCAH prepare you for what you're doing now?
In RCAH I did an independent study and several honors options in which I designed a syllabus and my own coursework. This fostered my ability to take initiative and create my own curriculum, which I do now for preschool. While studying in RCAH I also developed programming to discuss diversity-related issues with elementary school students. I use these skills daily in my work as a preschool teacher.
What were your academic interests in RCAH?
I chose Childhood and Society for my pathway, with a double major in Psychology. I focused my studies on child development and education, both within and outside of the RCAH.
What were your favorite aspects of the RCAH experience?
One of my favorite aspects of RCAH was the living and learning community. I appreciated that my neighbors were my peers in class. I took advantage of professors and academic advisors working just down the hall from my dorm room. I also loved the student life in the RCAH - I was the Executive Director of Roial Players, the Treasurer for RCAH Council, and a regular guest at the RCAHppella performances.
Did you ever take part in Study Abroad/Study Away at MSU?
I studied abroad twice during my time at MSU; first I went to South Africa on a freshman seminar abroad for two weeks to study Education and Apartheid. For my second study abroad, I spent eight weeks studying Sociology in Greece.
What words of wisdom do you have for current RCAH students?
Take initiative! When I applied for a job post-college, there was not an opening at the school I wanted to teach. I went to the employer and explained why I was a great candidate to work there, and she hired me to open a new classroom at that school. She created a position for me because I asked her to and showed her why I would be an asset to their school. Your dream job will most likely not come looking for you - create your own opportunities!