I currently have two roles in Academic Advising: providing academic advising to undeclared students and collaborating with the Center for International Education (CIE) to provide additional academic advising and orientation support to international students coming from abroad to study at UWEC.
For most of my working life I have been involved in the field of education as either a classroom teacher or a student services program manager, from elementary to university levels. Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, I earned an undergraduate degree in English at Dominican University, teaching certification at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago, and a master's degree in education at UW-Stevens Point. After 15 years in Student Services at UWEC, in 2003 I took a leave of absence from Advising to fulfill a life-long dream to work globally on issues of peace and justice. For seven years I worked as part of an international team of trained civilians doing unarmed peacekeeping and human rights work, primarily in the conflict zones of Sri Lanka, where I lived for five and a half years. Having attained my goal of living and working on issues of global peace, I returned to higher education at UW-Eau Claire in 2010, where I hope to inspire and encourage young people to both live their dreams and to find their own unique ways to contribute to a better, more just world for all.
Were you undeclared?
Terminally! Making a major decision was really hard for me. I put off "signing on the dotted line" for as long as I possibly could, finally having my registration BLOCKED until I officially declared my English major. It's not that I didn't like writing and literature, I just didn't want to be limited! And because I was the first girl in my family to go to college (and didn't know what an academic advisor was!) I didn't know anyone to talk to about academic issues or what educational options there were. As they say, "Life is what happens to you when you're busy doing something else," so my education has served me well over many years, and I still graduated with my undergraduate degree in four years!