"Be kind to yourself. There will be so many times you will wonder if you have what it takes, if you’re not smart enough to understand, if you can really do this. You do. You are. You can. Schedule yourself time to disconnect and prioritize your self-care. Break up with perfection and remind yourself that you bring your best every day, and sometimes that best might look different from one day to the next!"
Current Walden Program: MS, in Clinical Mental Health Counseling with a concentration in Marriage, Family, and Couple Counseling
Education: BS, Psychology (Walden University, 2021)
Professional Goals: I am passionate about helping people communicate and work through stress and life trials. I want to work with people in the LGBTQIA+ community and anyone that may be struggling in their relationships – romantic and non-romantic. I also want to focus on polyamorous partners to help facilitate healthy, long-lasting, and loving relationships.
Hobbies and Interests: Reading, writing, journaling, sewing, cosplay, video games, being creative, and animals.
Family and Pets: I live at home with my husband and our best friend. We have three cats and one dog – all very energetic and opinionated! Shadow, the oldest cat (9), is a black long-haired fluff. Agatha, the second oldest (7), is a grey Siamese and she rules the house. Jax is a 6-year-old Australian Shepherd and spends a lot of his time telling us whether the squirrels in the yard are trying to secretly get us all. Jax most recently found himself a baby brother kitten, Paris, who is (at the time of this writing) just 6 weeks old and has joined our home as a handsome orange tabby fluffball.
Why did you choose Walden for your undergraduate degree?
Walden is familiar to me. I got my undergraduate degree from Walden and the experience taught me a lot about my own limits and how to stretch past them comfortably. Walden allows for flexibility to still bring in an income while working to advance my knowledge in my chosen field. Walden also has a strong commitment to community and making an impact, which has helped inspire me to be more mindful about how I approach donating my time and money to my local community.
What has been your favorite class at Walden (to date) and why?
So far, one of my favorite classes at Walden was PSYC 4008 – Intergroup Conflict and Peacebuilding. This course focused a lot on the peacebuilding process and left me with a greater understanding of how conflict can be managed peacefully. It allowed me to understand world events better, but also helped me understand basic conflicts at a smaller level regarding others that have different points of view from my own.
What have you learned about yourself so far on your academic journey?
I have learned that the expectations I have of myself are far too high. The last year has been a journey of trying to find a balance of delegating, self-care, self-trust, acceptance, and breaking up with perfection. I also learned that it is extremely difficult to let go of these expectations, so every day is an exercise in doing my best to be gentle with myself and my learning process.
What is one fear or anxiety you had about starting school that you no longer have?
I was afraid I would quit halfway, but now I’m more than halfway through!
Who is your academic, professional, or personal mentor? Why has this person been so important to you?
My mentor is both personal and professional. Paige was my manager for six years in my first “grown-up” job and taught me so much about how to teach others, how to listen to others, and how to navigate the professional world. She has been my biggest cheerleader over the last eight years and has become an amazing friend. She keeps me humble, points out my skills and accomplishments when I have difficulty seeing them, and is always available to provide constructive feedback when I need it. Paige approaches relationships with people from a point of genuine interest in the person and their story. She reminds me of the kind of person I want to be when working with others.
What is a fear or anxiety you had about starting school that you no longer have?
I was terrified that I somehow wouldn’t make it. That I would start my school career and give up with nothing to show. At one point I did need to take a break and Walden was there to help me through the process of taking a leave of absence. I picked up right where I left off to go on to get my BS in Psychology. I do not worry about not making it anymore because I know that I have a lot of perseverance and that I can stay dedicated to my dreams and keep pushing. Walden also has so many resources available to help push through: academic skills, writing, and student success advising are all very helpful.
Why did you want to be a peer mentor?
I want to be able to help students get through the stresses of their education. Having a peer mentor goes beyond the Facebook communities, the classmates, and the friends and family that commiserate with our struggles. A peer mentor has experienced the same things you are experiencing and the connection of having someone that has shared experiences can make all the difference.
All the Skills You Need to Succeed.