by scholarship recipient Katherine Weathers, Published November 13, 2013
In January 2014, I will start my final semester at Eastern Michigan University. I began this journey to obtain my Masters in Higher Education Student Affairs after being away from a collegiate classroom for 25+ years. I was extremely excited because I knew the Maste's program I had selected was the perfect fit for me.
I am filled with a tremendous amount of pride, not only for me, but for the EMU Legacy whose footsteps I walk in. My mother, Lavada Weathers, is an alumna of Eastern Michigan University, completing her Bachelor of Arts ('73) and Master's Degree ('78). She taught me that anything is possible. In the words of Les Brown, "Wanting something is not enough. You must hunger for it. Your motivation must be absolutely compelling in order to overcome the obstacles that will invariably come your way." I believe this wholeheartedly.
As a Student Services Coordinator for the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies within the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts at the University of Michigan, my primary responsibilities include the coordination of a wide range of activities related to the department's curriculum, class scheduling, and student programs. In my role, I work one-on-one and in groups with undergraduate and graduate students. The best part of the classes I'm taking at EMU is that I am able to apply the knowledge and practices the very next day. During all of my practicum assignments, I have asked students to allow me to interview them, testing the theories taught the evening prior. It is a very satisfying feeling to know the methods and techniques you are learning can be immediately implemented to impact the lives of others.
My most memorable experience to date is the course taken in Traverse City, Legal, Ethical and Policy Issues in Student Affairs. This course provided me with an understanding of the issues facing departments in student affairs and how they relate to major functional areas within student affairs. In addition, during the week I bonded with students in my program on a personal level building friendships that I know will last a lifetime.
Being awarded the Legacy Scholarship is a blessing and has allowed me to further appreciate the path my mother took as a student between 1973 and 1978 while married with three children and working full-time. I am renewed and energized as I have found a deeper passion in higher education and its impact on the current generation of students and the future generations to come.
I, Katherine Weathers, am eager to move forward with my Master of Arts in Educational Leadership-Higher Education/ Student Affairs from Eastern Michigan University and continue our strong EMU legacy. I look forward to joining the ranks of alumni in May 2014.