Staff Member of the Week

This week I interviewed Sarah A. Fricke, alumni and current employee of Sierra Nevada College, to gauge her experience at Lake Tahoe and the impact her education has made on her life. She is employed as the Senior Administrative Assistant to the Psychology Program Chair, Christina M. Frederick.

Sarah graduated from the Psychology Department at SNC in 2015. She is 27 years young and migrated to the Lake Tahoe basin from the Eastern San Francisco Bay area in 2012.  She decided on the Lake Tahoe area because she always came here on family vacations and has always loved it.  How did she find Lake Tahoe?  A simple google of colleges in Lake Tahoe, of course!

“How did the Psychology Department directly impact you when you were still a student”(Answers paraphrased)

– Donna Axton helped me through a lot of hardships when I first began at SNC. She is so kind and caring and she helped me foster those qualities in myself to improve life and relationships with others.  Also, Christina Frederick has been an integral part in my success as a student and has taught me so much in regards to my work ethic and handling more responsibilities.  Christina helped me to start believing more in myself and that is important.

“How has the Psychology Department impacted you since being a Teacher’s Assistant for Christina?”

– I’ve learned so much about teaching, helping others, being more in charge of my responsibilities, and it has improved my life overall. It has also prepared me for Graduate School in a big way.

“How did you get involved in working with Christina and becoming a Teacher’s Assistant?

– I had actually never met Christina, but I was friends with her previous Administrative Assistant. I interviewed with her and began as a student worker, helping with the psychology blog, various clerical duties, and doing internship hours.  Then I eventually got interviewed for the Administrative Assistant and TA positions.

“What are your future plans after you leave Sierra Nevada College?”

– I really would like to enroll in a graduate program in counseling. My future aspirations include helping juveniles in detention centers and helping implement programs in prisons so inmates can have access to higher education.

“Can you discuss the research you’ve been involved in here?”

– I conducted my undergraduate research on the topic of self-esteem. I was also invited to participate in two additional projects that were funded through the Sierra Nevada College Internal Grant (one focusing on provisional and probational students and one focusing on water conservation).

I presented my undergraduate research as well as the Internal Grant projects at the Sierra Nevada College Psychology Research Fair. I have also presented at various external conferences, such as, UCLA, Stanford, and UNR.

“Last but not least, what is your favorite memory from Lake Tahoe you will carry with you through out your life?”

– The day I graduated, because so many of my friends and family drove up from all over California to support me. It felt so amazing to know all my hard work had paid off.

Author: Ryan M. Knuppenburg (Senior Intern)

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