Some students come to Otterbein already knowing which major they want, ready to get started immediately. Other students, like Hannah, come to Otterbein still unsure about the path their life will take. When a professor told Hannah about a new major at Otterbein called Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (WGSS), she was intrigued.
“Otterbein has helped me realize that I can turn my passions into reality. I’m a WGSS major and I get a lot of questions about just what I’ll do with that…but to me it seems really simple. I want to go into the ministry," she said. "With my WGSS major and my minor in Spanish and Religion, I’ll be going into the ministry with the utmost confidence, and with that, I also hope to engage in Hispanic ministry. These classes have taught me how to overcome the obstacles of being a woman in leadership, how to become empowered, and how to use history and knowledge to educate instead of attack.”
Hannah took a class with Professor Glenna Jackson that helped her broaden her interests further. If a student wants to major in a topic that Otterbein doesn’t offer yet, your advisor can help you create a new major.
“I’m also creating a Peace and Social Justice major at Otterbein. This school has made me realize that I can pave my own path and I will have full support behind me. I’ll probably end up with the title of a feminist, Spanish-speaking, liberal, open-minded, peacemaking minister- but that actually sounds fine to me! I thank Otterbein and the incredible faculty who have pushed me to make my passions reality, through my education and my faith.”
Hannah has been quite busy volunteering at many organizations that support her interests, like Sisters in Leadership and GARA, Girls are Really Awesome, named by the eighth-grade girls she mentors. She also helped start Crossroads, a new and inclusive worship service; the Women’s Gender Resource Center, and the One Billion Rising campaign to help victims of violence.
“Make this experience what you want it to be. Any student in college can pick up a major that they think is right for them, but the power of knowing and loving what you’re studying, where you’re volunteering and who you’re creating relationships with is impactful," she said. "For any first-year students out there, have fun with it, do what you love, study what you love, and you’ll find plenty of people along the way who support you and are inspired by your missions."