BY MARIA SAUER
Around campus, you may see sophomore Rachel Schulteis ’17 on the mezzanine floor of Todd Wehr Hall, on the second floor of Mulva or walking home to her room in VMC to enjoy an episode or two of “Friends.” Regardless of where you see Rachel, you can be sure to find her building community among the various places she travels and with the people with whom she crosses paths.
When I say that it was a pleasure to speak with Rachel about her time so far at St. Norbert College, I am not doing our conversion justice. As I asked Rachel about one of her favorite parts of St. Norbert, she beamed with jubilation.
She spoke about how “there is a place for everyone. I know that sounds cliché, but let me explain.”
She did go on to explain and the delight in her words only shone more brightly as she talked about her own experience in being involved with Student Alumni Ambassadors, Knights Against Trafficking, Chamber Singers and ALIVE, to name a few organizations.
Many people on campus are probably familiar with the programs that ALIVE puts on in residence halls. As Sensenbrenner Hall Coordinator through ALIVE, Rachel finds true value in her role and engagement with other students.
When I asked Rachel about her experience with ALIVE, she said, “ALIVE has been a group that offers an opportunity to students that they wouldn’t otherwise have. We ask the questions that don’t get discussed in typical college venues. We facilitate exploration in topics related to faith and vocation.” Meaningful aspects such as that of exploring faith and vocation drive Rachel to build community in this manner.
One person in particular that has been influential to Rachel is Rebecca Lahti. Lahti is the Assistant Director of Faith, Learning and Vocation and works with Rachel through ALIVE. As an Elementary Education major, Rachel was able to connect with Lahti, who graduated from St. Norbert with a degree in Secondary Education.
While there is uncertainty in the future, Rachel said that, “it is inspirational to me that Becky pursued another career path than the one she had in mind when she graduated. This reaffirms me that if I ever find that I’m not happy in what I’m doing, I can do something new.”
While this brings comfort to Rachel, it also brings excitement to her of what lies ahead. At this time, what Rachel finds most exciting about her future is that, “there is a lot of potential for the youth of America and there is an upturn in the respect and opportunities given to children. I am excited to be apart of this.” The beauty Rachel envisions for her future and for the future of children is profound.
A bit of advice this extraordinaire wishes to give is “to wake up in the morning believing that it’s going to be a good day. The attitude you wake up with is going to carry with you throughout the day.”
Rachel not only wishes to give these words of advice, but to live by them so that she may give off an attitude of goodness to the people she is surrounded by and the places in which she finds herself.