Ashley Bolick – Lewis & Clark College
Ashley got her degree in biology initially to become involved in the medical field but changed her path and became a teacher. She graduated from the Graduate School of Education at Lewis & Clark.
Lewis & Clark College GSE, Class of 2019
Degree: Master’s in Education
Biology – I chose biology because I was interested in pursuing a career in the medical field in my undergrad. All of the biology courses at Lewis & Clark allowed me to work hands on, gave me choice, and provided a space for exploration and investigation. All of the professors at Lewis & Clark challenged me and pushed me to constantly be in my Zone of Proximal Development.
How do you think being a first generation student affected your college experience?
Being a first generation college student affected the resources I had when going into college. I did not have the same upbringing some of my peers did as my parents were laborers. This affected my first year of college when I wanted to call home for advice, yet my parents did not know what I was going through; the rigorous work load, the softball practices, my extracurricular activities, and the demands of being a college student. I learned to navigate college on my own and felt as though I had more hurdles to jump through to be successful.
What do/did you love about L&C?
I love the academic challenge at Lewis & Clark along with the focus on social justice. I was constantly inspired and challenged during class. I also loved the small class size and the support from the professors. I personally struggled with taking tests and all of my professors worked with me to find how I could show what I know.
Were there any people along your collegiate journey that made a special impact on you? How?
My coaches, Paige Hall and Shawna Cyrus along with the Athletic Department helped me tremendously. I was supported with study halls, teammates, tutors, and academic supports.
All of my biology/chemistry professors made a huge impact on my journey because I knew I could always ask them for help, whether I was in their class or not.
My Spanish teachers, Cecilia Benennati and Laura Mika’s, also made a special impact on me. Both supported me as a whole person, not just a person in their class. They came out to my softball games, provided support, along with challenging me academically, and helping me feel comfortable being uncomfortable speaking a new language.
What was the most impactful experience during your time in college?
Playing collegiate softball and beating one of our rivals, Linfield, for the first time in years was one the most impactful moments in my collegiate career. My coaches, Paige Hall and Shawna Cyrus along with the Athletic Department helped me tremendously. I was supported with study halls, teammates, tutors, and academic supports. The time, work, and preparation that it took to be prepared to win that game all proved to be worth it. I continued to work hard to be the best that I can in all aspects because nothing feels as good as being successful.
How did you adjust to life post-graduation?
I adjusted very well to life after graduation. I felt prepared after graduation and that I had a plan.
What have you been doing since graduation?
I worked for a year at a Physical Therapy Clinic and then decided to apply and graduate from Lewis & Clark’s Graduate Program of Education & Counseling. I am now applying for jobs to be an elementary teacher. I am also currently spending time giving pitching lessons / softball lessons, traveling, camping, and spending time with my fiancé and family.
What does it mean to you to have been chosen as a Renaissance Scholar?
To me being chosen as a Renaissance Scholar is motivating. The support the Renaissance Scholarship gave me is unmeasurable. I felt more confident being chosen as a Renaissance Scholar and a feeling that “I can do this, people believe in me.”