When deciding to come to Augustana, I remember being told that my professors “would get to know me inside and outside of the classroom,” I would have time for lots of “one-on-one interactions with faculty members who hold the highest degrees in their fields.” Little did I know that all of that was a big, fat lie: the professors here do so much more than that! Just this week it really hit me how much personal attention I get from the staff and faculty here every day! Here are some of my experiences from the past week:
* Last Tuesday, I get an e-mail from the director of the CSD Clinic (I had her as a professor last year) telling me about a scholarship she thinks I should apply for. But there’s a catch- I need to fill out this HUGE application, write a resume, get 2 letters of recommendation, and fill out this extensive financial aid form. All in the next 3 days. I frantically e-mail one of my professors (who is technically on sabbatical) explaining the situation and asking if she would be willing to whip something up for me. I send a text to one of my psychology professors asking the same thing. They both respond almost immediately and I have two fabulously written letters in my hands within 24 hours. Now is that service or what??? In the meantime, I have taken my forms up to the financial aid office where I run into one of the counselors there who I met briefly earlier this year. Recognizing me, she eagerly asks if she can help me and I tell her what I need. She is so excited to help and goes out of her way to fill out the forms for me and even contacts the organization that is sponsoring the scholarship to clarify a point on the form, and I have the form back within 48 hours. Incredible.
*It’s lunchtime a few days later. I’m heading over to grab a sandwich from the college center when I hear someone shouting, “Katrina! How are you?!?” I turn around and it’s Maria, one of the cashiers. She proceeds to tell me that she was thinking about me earlier that morning and realized she hadn’t seen me in awhile and was so glad I stopped by today. Talk about feeling special!
*I got to talk with my faculty advisor a few days ago about starting my honors capstone project which is an independent research project in which I get to do basically whatever I want and work with faculty members from different disciplines. After giving her a rough description of the direction I want my project to go, she tells me that she would love for me to work with her at a local organization that helps teenage moms learn how to take care of their children. Cool!!! She gives me the name of another faculty member to contact and it seems as if she is equally, if not more excited about the project than I am!
*During my work shift in the Office of Admissions the other day, I stopped in to ask one of the counselors, Becky, about if she had a certain type of paper. She didn’t but what she did have was a new Teavana teapot that had just come in the mail. She invited me to join her in her first cup of tea from the new teapot. We had lots of fun figuring out how it all worked, and the tea was delicious!!!
*Every day, I work in the Psychology Department for Dr. Vincent, one of the professors there. It is pretty cool to get to see what goes on “behind the scenes” and how much work all the professors put in getting things ready for our classes and research projects. But amid all that, the professors there always take time out of their busy schedules to ask how my day is going and chat about life. The department secretary, Sheri, is an especially good lunch buddy and loves to share good conversation as well as good food. I have so much fun just watching all the madness going on in that department every day and how much the faculty enjoy interacting with the students.
*This morning, I’m on my way to my French horn lesson when the Orchestra director, Dr. Culver, sees me coming in the door and pulls me aside to tell me what a great job I’m doing in Orchestra. I have a few solo parts this term that are really hard to play and I have been struggling with, but Dr. Culver wanted me to know that I’m doing just fine and to keep up the good work. Then he wanted to know about how my classes were going and wanted to make sure that I was having some fun this term along with all the working and studying I’ve been doing. It’s good to know somebody’s looking out for my mental sanity!
I wish I could take credit for all of this and claim that I must be really special to be getting this much attention from the Augustana faculty and staff. But it’s not me, it’s them. The faculty and staff here prove to me everyday that the claims we make to our prospective students are true. They are truly amazing people who really care about every student they come into contact with, and will go the extra mile every time to ensure that their students are getting the best experience possible. Now if that doesn’t put a smile on your face, I suggest you get yourself to the nearest professor and have a little chat. Smiles guaranteed.
Posted on September 16th, 2009 by katrina-jensen
Filed under: Katrina Jensen