Wartburg helped me focus on my future goals

NAME: Abby Shannon
MAJOR: Psychology and sociology 
CURRENTLY: Licensed clinical mental health therapist, Center Associates

WHY WARTBURG: When I sat down and decided which college I wanted to attend as a senior in high school, I had not given much thought to Wartburg. I was scheduled with a roommate and already had a class schedule at a different college in Iowa, when I still had one school left to visit and cross off my list: Wartburg. I decided to make one more pit stop for a college visit at Wartburg to help me solidify my decision on attending the other college. I stepped on campus at Wartburg and things clicked. I felt instantly at home. I knew that Wartburg was the school I wanted to be at for the following four years. The rest was history.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE WARTBURG TRADITION: When Outfly season comes around … I secretly still follow to see when it lands! Outfly was such a fun and unique part of Wartburg; even better being on the Orientation Staff that gets to wake everyone up at obnoxious hours of the morning!! Even though I’m not in college anymore to celebrate it, I enjoy the tradition from afar and reminisce about the happy memories that I’ve shared with friends and roommate during that magical day of the year!

Abby Shannon

WHAT WAS THE ONE THING YOU NEVER IMAGINED YOU WOULD DO BEFORE COMING TO WARTBURG: I never imagined going on service trips or study abroad experiences that would be so meaningful and powerful! Those experiences were some of the most memorable moments and important life lessons in my life! 

HOW DID YOUR WARTBURG EXPERIENCE PREPARE YOU FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE: Wartburg allowed me to grow as an individual but to also see the world from a much broader perspective. My overall view of society, cultures from around the world, and learning so much about differing view points from others has made me a much more well-rounded professional therapist. Experiences helped me find pieces of the puzzle that had seemingly been missing in my life. Wartburg helped me focus on my future goals, which were beyond an undergraduate degree. I gained the confidence that I COULD go on for my masters and I didn’t second guess myself. Wartburg professors also were amazing role models and would go out of their way to help me get from one life stepping stone to another. I wasn’t a number; I was part of a tight-knit family where everyone had your back.

HOW DO YOU STAY CONNECTED TO THE COLLEGE: I frequently visit Waverly, so I love to stop by and say hello to the professors and faculty who are currently working there. I also take part in UKnight Day and ALWAYS sport my Wartburg license plate!

HOW ARE YOU LIVING OUT THE WARTBURG MISSION: Each and every day I walk into my office as part of a team, but also as an individual leader. I continue to challenge and guide my clients every day into becoming a better version of the person they want to be. I continuously take into account so many variables of an individual’s life to assure a rounded and personal treatment plan is established.

WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR CURRENT STUDENTS: Don’t ever be afraid to utilize the services that Wartburg can offer you (learning assistance, writing lab, counseling services, etc.); these services are included as part of tuition and they are only there to help you! You won’t get these services free of charge after you leave college, so use them now! Also, get involved in organizations! No better way to meet new friends than to immerse yourself in something you are passionate about (or even just want to learn about)!

WHY WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE WORTH IT: Wartburg College offers a unique experience that allowed me to have the connection I needed with professors. I was able to not feel like a “number” and I felt I was part of one big family. Countless professors and faculty helped shape me into the person I am today by giving me guidance and support that I needed during a difficult time in my life. I felt a sense of trust and security while on campus. There were so many different ways that I was able to engage in extra curricular activities and learn healthy communications with others. I felt that I was included and in “the know” of everything going on campus. It was truly a place I called home for my four years of undergrad. I continue to be reminded of positive memories and the ways that I gained a stronger sense of self-confidence, self-esteem, and growth during my four years there. Every ounce of it was WORTH IT.