Hannah Clark is an elementary education major from Roanoke, IL
Hometown: Roanoke, IL
Year: Expected graduation: 2024
Major: Elementary Education
What did you want to be when you were growing up? Are you pursuing that as a major, or have you taken another path?
I always wanted to be a teacher when I was growing up. I've always loved working with kids and knew I wanted to do it in my career as well. That's why I'm studying elementary education.
What is your major (and/or minor) and why did you decide on this course of study?
I'm studying elementary education. I decided on this course of study because I was inspired by my mother, who is a special education teacher. I've also really enjoyed helping children and knew that teaching was the best career choice for me.
What has been something you have found pleasantly surprising about your experience at NIU?
How helpful everyone is! If you have any questions or concerns at all, there is always someone you can contact who will be glad to help you.
How have you connected with other students virtually to study for classes, meet new people or form new friendships?
With COVID, it has certainly been hard to make connections, but social media has helped me to connect with other people in my classes. Ultimately, in order to meet new people and form new friendships, I had to step outside my comfort zone and attend as many in-person events as possible and take advantage of all the ways NIU has helped us make connections.
Are you involved in any student organizations, mentoring programs or extra-curricular activities? If so, which ones? How have they added to your experience as a Huskie?
I am on the Silverettes dance team here at NIU, which has helped me to make connections and build more school spirit by dancing and cheering on our Huskies, even if it's done virtually! I am also involved in the University Honors Program and the Dean's Achievement Scholars in the College of Education. Both have helped me to not only challenge myself academically, but also to provide me with the resources I need to succeed here at NIU.
Who has been one of your favorite instructors/professors and why? What course did they teach?
As a freshman, I have only completed one semester so far. But last semester I really enjoyed working with Sean Daly in POLS 100. You could really tell how passionate he was about teaching his students and how he wanted everyone to succeed.
Where is your favorite spot on campus or in the community? Why are you drawn to it?
I have loved exploring the lagoon! When it's nice outside, it's a great study spot and also a great place to relax and enjoy nature.
What advice would you give to a student who is applying to colleges?
My advice would be to follow your gut and think about what pathway would be best for you logistically, emotionally and mentally.
Coming to college, what is something that you have had to learn to do differently?
I have had to learn how to balance schoolwork and a social life even more than I thought I would have to. It's difficult, but finding that right balance is what's going to make the college experience more enjoyable.
What do you do to relax or recharge?
To relax, I try to take a walk to the lagoon when it's nice outside or watch one of my favorite shows in my dorm.