"I started the English M.A. program at NIU over a decade after earning a B.A. in English at another university. As a young mother returning to academia, I found myself overwhelmed at times; thankfully, however, many of the English faculty mentored me as I pursued a master's in English education.
This degree allowed me the flexibility to expand my knowledge base, including courses in literature, rhetoric, and linguistics, as well as courses in pedagogy. As such, upon entering the teaching profession, I was prepared to teach a variety of classes and texts. Additionally, while pursuing my degree I established connections with both my colleagues and professors; many of these connections continue to benefit me professionally and personally years after graduation. With the help of the English faculty at NIU, I was able to obtain a teaching position within a semester of finishing my student teaching, and I continue to lean on my experiences at NIU as I grow in my field."