Program: Master's degree program, University of Michigan School of Social Work
How has your Hood education benefited you?
My Hood education, inside and outside of the classroom, has given me a variety of knowledge in areas that I didn't think would present itself in different situations. For example, Hood's emphasis on self-awareness and leaving stereotypes behind—beginning with "Harmony at Hood" during freshmen orientation and continuing in other areas such as Alternative Spring Break—has helped me to have greater self-awareness as a graduate social work student. Additionally, the knowledge and experiences that I draw on from past classes, trips, conferences and more on a regular basis has propelled me forward in my graduate studies. For example, I was able to exempt myself from multiple classes in graduate school based on the education that I received at Hood. Lastly, Hood's strong focus on undergraduate research and developing research skills has given me the confidence to complete research-related assignments in my graduate classes. There are so many ways I have and will continue to benefit from my Hood education.
How did your time at Hood prepare you for the future?
I am currently in graduate school at the University of Michigan in the School of Social Work. Hood's social work program is a well-rounded program that has done an excellent job of preparing me for graduate school. In fact, I wasn't at all nervous about taking graduate social work classes because Hood has done so well with providing tools for social work majors to be successful, whether we go to graduate school or straight into a social work career.
What were your extracurricular experiences?
The numerous leadership- and service-related extracurricular experiences that I had at Hood have provided me with transferable skills (e.g., networking) that I can use in all situations.
Did you decide your major right away?
I originally intended to double major in political science and history, but I changed my major to social work because I felt that majoring in social work was a better way for me to get closer to reaching my life goal of helping as many people as I can.
What is your favorite memory of Hood?
My favorite memory of Hood is when I first visited the campus before I decided to enroll. Honestly, I decided to attend Hood because I got such a positive feeling from the moment I got out of the car. I felt that it was the right place for me to go for college and I know it sounds a bit cliché, but the rest from that point on is history.
Who were your mentors at Hood?
I had multiple mentors while at Hood, all for different aspects of my time there. Some alums have been my mentor because they took me under their wings when I first came. Faculty members such as professors Ernst, Zaki and Derbes have been my mentors academically by guiding me through research and so much more. Staff members such as Dean White, Ted Chase, Rev. O'Malley, Danielle Weaver, Mary Jean Hughes, Tammy Beckern and many more have supported and guided me through leadership experiences, helped me become more professional and (some) have guided my spiritual and religious life. Some of my mentors have been mentoring me the entire time I have been at Hood while others have mentored me for a shorter time period. Nonetheless, I have had and still have many mentors from Hood.
What is your opinion on the value of a Hood education?
My overall opinion is that a Hood education in invaluable. If you really put a lot into your Hood education, you'll see how much Hood gives to you and how much of it stays with you after leaving Hood.
What is your opinion on the value of a liberal arts education?
I think that a liberal arts education is so valuable because it provides one with an all-encompassing perspective of the world that I don't think would be possible from a nonliberal arts education.
What would you say to students applying to Hood?
I would tell a prospective student that my time at Hood has been absolutely wonderful. The key things that made my time at Hood so enjoyable were the mentors I had, the connections I made, the opportunities that Hood provides and of which I took advantage, and the education that has propelled me forward, even after graduating.
What role has your Hood education played in your career?
Hood was the place where I fused my educational, career and personal goals together. My personal goal in life is to help as many people as I can and Hood gave me the opportunity to blend that personal goal with the educational and career goals to become a macro social worker. My education at Hood has helped me to make sure that my personal, educational and career goals are all in sync with one another.
Why did you choose to attend Hood College?
The reason I chose Hood for my undergraduate education is the same as my favorite memory of Hood: I literally felt good vibes about coming there. Additionally, the STAR who gave me a tour of the campus was very knowledgeable and geared the tour towards my interests. Also, the faculty and administrative staff members are very knowledgeable about what they do. It is very refreshing to be able to call someone, ask a question and have it answered (even if the person has to transfer you to someone who knows the answer). I have not regretted my decision to attend Hood for my undergraduate education.