Why did you choose Clarke?
Accessibility was the most important factor in my school choice. Because I am in a wheelchair, I wanted to be able to get around campus easily. I heard Clarke was more accessible than other schools in the area so I decided to visit when I was looking to transfer from Northeast Iowa Community College. I also really liked the curriculum and faculty of the social work program. I studied human services at NICC because it allowed me to help people in need. I developed this passion after my accident in 2007. A social work degree seemed like the most logical next step.
What activities are you involved with on and off campus?
I do a lot of volunteering in the community with the social work program. For example, I participated in "Make a Difference Day." This is an event where students have the opportunity to help people in the community. I was able to help by cleaning and doing yard work. I was also involved in Project Concern. This is a non-profit social service agency that educates and empowers less fortunate individuals in several counties in the area. The CROP Hunger walk was another really fun event. This is a walk to fundraise in the fight against hunger. I hope to participate in that again.
Did you receive financial aid? If so, how did it help you?
Yes, I did. It helps me tremendously. It helps me succeed with my future dreams of working in the social work field. Without financial aid it would be impossible for me to attend school to earn a degree that will help provide for my 7 year-old son, Tait.
What do you like about Dubuque?
It is a very welcoming city. In Dubuque, if you meet someone once, it's very likely that they will remember you the next time you encounter them.
Do any faculty/staff members stand out?
Mary Ellen, the front desk receptionist, helps me every day. She gets my coffee for me in the morning when I get to campus and she always puts a smile on my face. Regina Boarman, chair of the social work department, is another person that stands out. She has been there for me since the beginning of my education at Clarke; she is such a kind and gentle-hearted person. She is very easy to talk to and will always do what she can to help.
How has Clarke changed since you began your education?
When I came to Clarke, I thought the accessibility was great. But each year it keeps getting better and better. They are implementing more push buttons on doors, additional handicapped parking spots, and more access ramps around campus. It's great to see how they are evolving.
If you had the chance to tell a prospective student one GREAT thing about Clarke, what would it be?
Clarke has such a friendly atmosphere with professors who want the best for their students. They want their students to succeed, so if you have questions, ask! Someone is always willing to help. Clarke cares.