Happy September feMAILs! This month we talked to some friends and family about their experiences in school. Check out what Rachel, Bre, Lauren and Judi had to say.
What was your favorite subject in elementary school?
Rachel | Spelling and English.
Bre | In elementary school my favorite subject was English. I've always loved the creative freedom of it. (Thanks Dr. Seuss, you da man!)
Lauren | Math
Judi | Creative Arts. Back then it was everything creative, like drama, creative writing, a project, writing a haiku. I wasn't a great artist, but I loved it.
What made you choose to continue school, or not to continue?
Rachel | I got my BA because I was told that it would be really hard to get a good job without one. I got my MA because I wanted the specialized skills and was interested in the material and type of work that it prepared me for.
Bre | I only chose to continue in schooling because I saw how much of a struggle teachers went through, yet the joy they had to see their students moving on, graduating, getting married and having children of their own. I saw the happiness in giving your all for someone else in order to smile yourself.
Lauren | Finances.
Judi | It was just what you did. You went to high school then to college. I also just wanted to be independent.
Who has been your favorite teacher or professor? Why?
Rachel | My favorite professor was Starla Anderson. She taught my favorite course in undergrad and encouraged me to pursue my MA in a related field. She became a mentor figure for me during my senior year of college and during my graduate program. She still checks in with me by email and with occasional phone calls.
Bre | My favorite teacher overall has always been Mrs. Maria Lopez-Sheldon. She's always been such an inspiration and she's like family to me.
Lauren | Mrs. Burill (Algebra 2). She helped me feel confident in math.
Judi | Elementary school? Miss Hart. I had a special relationship with her. She believed in me. In 7th grade, Mr. Heaston. Not only was he very good looking, but he made me believe that I was good at science. Mr. Burnham in high school gave me a love for math. He taught so differently. I did very well in his class. Mrs. Siler was my speech communications professor in college. She inspired me to pursue public speaking, which I do today.
What is something that you wish girls had more of in school?
Rachel | I think mentor relationships can be so valuable. I think young girls would benefit from having an adult female speak into their lives and encourage them in their goals. I also think that there should be a class for high school freshmen or sophomores that allows them to really see what it takes to pursue certain careers. They can explore areas of study that they think they like, to figure out what they should do. That way they can have realistic goals about college and finding jobs in the future.
Bre | I wish girls had a safer place. There have been incidents in school where girls get put out of their "groups" because of drama. Or where girls break up with their boyfriends and don't really have friends to hang out with. Where girls get into a fight with other girls and now all of her friends have ditched her. I just wish there was a place where she could go to make new friends, whether it be a teacher's classroom, a place in the office, somewhere they could go and be comfortable.
Lauren | I wish there was a mentorship program.
Judi | In my generation, we became extremely codependent on the men in our life. Our fathers and husbands. It is much different today, but it would be cool if girls were encouraged to take wood shop and auto. If me car breaks down, I wouldn't know what to do. It should be a requirement that girls learn essential skills like that.
What's one thing that you always wanted to study, but never got the chance?
Rachel | I have always wanted too study emergency medicine and become a certified EMT, but I have yet to make my way around to it.
Bre | I have always wanted to study psychology. I'm very interested in the way the mind works and the way it affects our emotions, or fight or flight. But unfortunately with budget cuts no one really gets the chance to get into exactly what they would love to study.
Lauren | Interior Design
Judi | I only took one psychology class and I wish I took more. If I went back to school, that is what I would study.