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Current Scholars

Rae Ballinger `23
Rae Ballinger `23
Accounting and Business Administration (majors), Economics (minor)
I know that an issue that I have faced in the past that is especially common in the field of study that I am pursuing is sexism. My biggest career goal is to be the CEO of a company. This is already a difficult goal, but being a female also puts me at a significant disadvantage as only 7% of Fortune 500 company CEOs are female. This motivates me to work even harder in my efforts towards social justice to make sure that everyone no matter of any identity can be seen as equal.
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Bonnie Raechal Beres `23
Bonnie Raechal Beres `23
Biology (major), Art & Spanish (minors)
One of my gifts is to spread hope (or light) in places (or situations) that seem dull. Because of this, when I am with others, I try to focus on the good and foster joy. I do my best to be inclusive and friendly to everyone that I encounter, and as a result, people who are lacking connections are often drawn to me... My time at SNC has helped me to see that I am a connector, and moreover, that I have the power, through my treatment of others, to boost their self-confidence and reduce their feelings of loneliness.
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Megan Bergin `24
Megan Bergin `24
Religious Studies and Sociology (majors)
Being involved with TRIPS has taught me so much about the world and my place in it. I have barely scratched the surface of how all social justice issues are interconnected. I got to learn more about environmental sustainability and help Asheville GreenWorks in North Carolina with a group of kind and passionate individuals. I learned that there is so much power in being in community and realized that passions grow through direct experiences with the world around us. Knowing that I enjoyed being outside and doing physically demanding work helped me to be an active group member. My heart was opened when I realized that the trash littered throughout the creek we cleaned was from the homeless who didn’t think about sustainability but instead could only focus on their next meal, shelter, etc. I was able to make connections between our trip and my social movements class that helped me to challenge my assumptions about people.
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Maximus Berner `24
Maximus Berner `24
Computer Science & Mathematics (majors), Philosophy (minor)
My favorite part of philosophy, which has made me pick up my minor, was the way everyone can have an unique approach to solving a problem. I love considering all sorts of perspectives and analyzing how they work together to achieve a common goal, how they differ, and how they are similar. I am much more of a listener than a speaker, and I am more interested in finding the best answer that serves all perspectives than perpetuating my own ideas.
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Yury Bogdanov `25
Yury Bogdanov `25
Biology (major), Psychology, Philosophy, Sociology (minors)
I believe my Russian Identity motivates my investment and interest in social justice. I faced discrimination growing up on the basis of my race and national origin. I moved to the U.S. when I was 8 years old after my father passed away; growing up in Wisconsin came with many challenges from learning English to knowing how to interact with other people. As global tensions rise to historic highs, I continue to work on my education in order to get into medical school for a Physical Therapy program.
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Sam Brienza `25
Sam Brienza `25
Psychology (major), Sociology & Human Services (minor)
Kindness has been part of who I am since I was little. I find it important that we fight for a kinder world. One way that I do this is through service. Service has always been part of my life and is encouraged through my parents and my own personal beliefs. I have always felt that I was called to serve in my community. I love service and helping others. I find that service is an important step in tackling social justice.
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Shawn Cushman `24
Shawn Cushman `24
Psychology (major), Theology (minor)
If I had to choose a career right now, I would become a recreational or wilderness-based therapist because I love being outside and want to support others' mental health. For me, access to quality mental healthcare has changed the trajectory of my life and I hope to continue to bring awareness to the need for mental healthcare in our communities. I am also considering how I can incorporate spirituality into what I do. A dream of mine is to create spaces for queer people of all faith backgrounds to experience spirituality and healing through the outdoors and nature.
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Meaghan Dutton `25
Meaghan Dutton `25
International Studies and Elementary Education (majors), Language Arts (minor)
While my family raised me Catholic, the homeschool organization I was part of was Baptist and the rest of my education was generally secular. Because of this extreme dichotomy, I think that I have learned to hold onto my beliefs, but also be open to discussion and input on these beliefs. I also think that my own big questions are still waiting for answers, and this is why I have kept myself so open to different perspectives and opinions.
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Aidan Edge `24
Aidan Edge `24
Biochemistry (major), Spanish (minor)
As someone who comes from a privileged background, I know that I might not be able to understand or feel the injustices that others may face based on their race, sexuality, religious upbringing, etc. Nevertheless, I still want to do my best in learning and applying ways I can help lift others up through social justice involvement and service opportunities. I think anyone, no matter who they are or their background, can get involved in their community and serve those around them.
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Katelyn Flanagan `24
Katelyn Flanagan `24
Spanish Education (major), German (minor)
I have always desired to understand fully. No matter if it was an equation in math class, or if it was the Truth about the meaning of my life. My inquisitive personality inspires me to continue my searching and questioning, and I aspire to attain a genuine belief in which I can surrender all of myself.
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Reilly Frazier `25
Reilly Frazier `25
Nursing (major), Spanish (minor)
One of the things I try to live my life by is to always keep learning to improve myself and my impact. I love philosophical and deep topics and untangling some of the tougher questions. I want to learn about more perspectives and even if the perspectives are different than my own, I want to understand why others think differently and have different beliefs.
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Alexander Fritsch `25
Alexander Fritsch `25
Chemistry (major), Mathematics (minor)
Through the time I spent volunteering with the YMCA, I came to know many little boys and girls from around the world who had very different life stories from the one I have. I am very fortunate to be a white male living in a middle class family in the United States, however, the boys and girls that I met were not so fortunate. Earlier this year, I met a seven year old girl from Pakistan whose family fled from the Taliban; last year, I met a family with four children between the ages of 11 and five who were from the Democratic Republic of the Congo and fled to Uganda to escape religious persecution. Although I myself am not facing adversity, I have been fortunate enough to get even a small glimpse into the lives of those who are way too young to ever be going through things like that. In the future, I hope to be a voice for people like these children and help to make a positive impact in the world.
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Sophia Hanmann `24
Sophia Hanmann `24
Sociology & Integrative Studies (majors)
I am a young, female caucasian American where I grew up in a middle-class environment. I admit I was privileged and sheltered where I did not see the rest of the world. Now that I am older I have a desire for social justice. This world is distributed unequally in terms of wealth, opportunities, and privileges. I am motivated to help this inequality in not only the community but in the world.
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Emma Hanson `24
Emma Hanson `24
Computer Science & Political Science (majors)
My identity as a woman has recently been the main aspect of my identity that has driven my intense interest in social justice. This year in particular, I have experienced so many things women experience that have really opened my eyes to some of the discriminatory realities in the world. From being talked over in class to getting cat-called by cars full of male students on the way home from class, my interest in gender justice has been at an all time high.
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Victor Kostov `25
Victor Kostov `25
Biomedical Science (major)
I am an international student and I feel like that brings diversity to the table as well as a different set of perspective as I come with a different set of beliefs as far as religion. I also can contribute to the aspect of growing up in two different countries and how it has impacted me in a more positive way… From my perspective and life experiences, I can say for a fact that it is not the same as someone who is an American citizen. I have dealt with the process of what being an immigrant can hold as it is not an easy life and I can assure that from my parents perspective as well.
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Bethany Kreklow `24
Bethany Kreklow `24
History Education (major)
My identity motivates my investment and interest in social justice in many ways. Up until this past summer, I didn't understand or appreciate my privilege. As a white, cis-gender female who grew up in a middle class, two-parent household where both of my parents are college educated, I have a lot of privilege, and feel like I have a moral responsibility to help others and try to even the playing field so that everybody has access to more opportunities. I am constantly learning more about the stark inequalities in society, and I believe that the world can be better than it is now. Growing up, my parents instilled an appreciation of community service in me, which is something that I have taken with me to college.
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Sarah Labinski `25
Sarah Labinski `25
Psychology (major) and Sociology (minor)
My religious upbringing as a Catholic has motivated me to become involved in helping others, especially as I grew up doing service projects with my church. My parents raised me to understand that sometimes people are less fortunate than me, and that we have an opportunity and responsibility to help, whether that's by making tie blankets for those in the local senior living facility or by cutting plastic bags to be crocheted into sleeping mats for those who are homeless. I've served at St. Bens in Milwaukee with my dad, and I've learned a lot about working with others in order to make a difference in the lives of others. Additionally, my dad's educational attainment as a SNC grad helped him to recognize the importance of service, as he helped start a local homeless shelter for the Green Bay area. As I've learned through the TRIPS Program, Catholic Social Teaching encourages people to have a preferential option for the poor and respect all human life; this motivates me to do all I can to help those in need.
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Aria Lemke `25
Aria Lemke `25
Music Education (major)
I'm very accustomed to discussing big topics. Over the past year, I've met so many people who are also very willing to have these conversations with me. This has allowed me to trial and error my way through these conversations with my peers and family. In all I really enjoy big topic conversations, especially with perspectives that differ from my own, because of how beneficial it is to understand the people around me and why they feel the way they feel.
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Peter Lim `25
Peter Lim `25
Art Education (major)
I am a Catholic Asian American man from the Southern United States of Texas and Louisiana who has grown and developed personal learning to various creative topics that'll better my future. One goal in mind as I have taken several jobs, organizations/ clubs, classes, and interests within the first year of Saint Norbert is to network with the community for a better understanding of what real life has in store plus connecting my beliefs to paint the image of what humanity is.  Last but least, my motivation stems from interactions, relationships, and discussions I create with another individual or organization, and this is a reflection of how I see God talking with humans, his creation.
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Seth Mayrer `24
Seth Mayrer `24
Economics & Philosophy (majors)
Given my experience as a person with cerebral palsy and a brother to a person with autism, I do believe that I have been raised in an environment where I was taught to be open with others. Because of my upbringing I didn't have to learn to be more open, it was engrained into my being.
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Elizabeth Murray `25
Elizabeth Murray `25
Sociology (major), Human Services (minor)
I have always felt that my vocation in life has always been to serve others in whatever way I can. Service has always been something I've been really passionate about. The biggest way that I have seen this play out is in my work with ALIVE. It means so much to me when a participant says "I really needed this right now" in regard to a program that we put on. It was really touching after my apprentice program when a participant reached out to me to tell me about how the program went. They told me that I did a good job and that they finally got a chance to talk about their ideas for the future. It really meant a lot to me that my program helped someone in some way.
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Jacob Risberg `24
Jacob Risberg `24
Undecided (major)
Being on the fringe as a kid, I always tried to understand the people that I was afraid of or disagreed with. I believe I could bring a different perspective to my peers that focuses on this inclusivity and understanding. I know that we may not all agree, but if we want to provoke change we must reach an understanding. I will say there is a right and wrong in many issues, but in many instances there is a grey area that is often overlooked simply because people are stuck in their ways.
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Lauren Sorebo `24
Lauren Sorebo `24
English (major), Economics (minor)
I grew up privileged, being fortunate enough to have my family provide for me with no issues. I learned about the importance and beauty of being able serve others as best I could, in any way I could… Additionally, I grew up as an individual with a disability. In fact, it was unexpected by my family, and we all had to learn and grow as a family when it came to my disability. It is my goal to spread awareness of individuals with disabilities and the issues, such as accessibility and stigmas that they face in different arenas of life.
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Kaitlin Thompson `24
Kaitlin Thompson `24
Elementary Education (major), ESL (minor)
I grew up as a middle-class, Catholic female, so I could just sit back and enjoy the life that I have due to my family's financial stability or I could work to be more involved in social justice. I have always chose the latter. I have always been the one to make everyone feel included and that is exactly what social justice means to me. Therefore, I feel that my social identity makes me want to be more invested to make the world a more equal place.
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David Turner `24
David Turner `24
Biology Education (major)
As a white man, it is important to me that I recognize the privilege that I have grown up with. While that does not mean I haven't had my fair share of struggles, it does mean that I am not faced with the same setbacks that tend to be built-in to society. Such obstacles are exactly why I find it important to take a close look at social justice, and vocation; find something that you are called to do and make a difference. This has made me very comfortable when speaking about life and society's biggest questions, and I have become used to offering a different perspective that others may not have thought about.
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Hannah Wenzel `24
Hannah Wenzel `24
Biology (major), Psychology & German (minors)
I personally think that what I and each of us know about the way the world, the universe, and the way life works is only one very tiny piece of a very large puzzle. As a student of science, I realize that we truly know very little about the world, and what we do "know" is based on relative evidence and theories. With this in mind, what I take to be absolutely true could ultimately be absolutely wrong, so I never want to assume that my beliefs are always going to be what is true or right.
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Chelsea Yang `25
Chelsea Yang `25
Biomedical Science (major), Spanish & Peace and Justice (minors)
During my first semester at SNC, I lost my footing on what it means to live a life that is true to me: that is rooted in my beliefs and values. I was so focused on studying and getting the grades I wanted that I had forgotten WHY I am studying to become a doctor, WHY I am here. I want to be a doctor to essentially help people who don't have access to medical care and because I truly love learning and asking hard questions in order to realize the root cause of problems. Being at SNC has helped me to truly ask and reflect on why I want to do what I want to do.
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