Senior Spotlights


by RIKKILYNN SHIELDS, Assistant Editor

Education major and Manhattan College senior, Lauren Valle, decided that Manhattan College was the best place for her to excel in her studies.

From Hampton Bay, New York, Lauren decided that Manhattan College was the perfect choice for her. The school wasn’t too far from home, and Lauren loved it’s proximity to the heart of the city. This May, Lauren will be graduating from Manhattan College with an Elementary and Special Education degree.

Valle plans to pursue her masters at Manhattan also. Lauren Valle/Courtesy

Lauren knew at an early age that teaching would be the perfect profession for her. “I knew I wanted to become a teacher since I was a very young girl. When I was younger, I would play pretend school with my friends and family all the time.  I would always play the role of the teacher, and have my younger sister be the student.” Lauren said.

Although Education was what Lauren focused on the most throughout her college career, her favorite class was one of the religion classes she took during her freshman year. “My favorite class at Manhattan College was a religion course I took my freshman year about the Holocaust. My professor taught me so much in and outside of the classroom.  We had the opportunity to go downtown to the Museum of Jewish Heritage and to meet with a Holocaust survivor. The class was extremely powerful and stirring.”

Lauren enjoyed everything about her Manhattan College experience, however, her one regret was not studying abroad. “If I could do it all over again, I would have studied abroad for a whole semester!” Lauren said. Although she did not study abroad, Lauren had the opportunity to student teach at a local school. “I had the opportunity to be a student teacher in a local elementary school in the Bronx for a semester. I was placed in a fourth grade classroom.  It was the best experience I could have ever had. These fourth grade students were so inspiring.  They helped me learn how I can be the best teacher possible.”

“Overall, I truly enjoyed my experience at Manhattan College.  I loved everything that Manhattan had to offer me.  I formed great friendships, had opportunities to help me in my future career, and really enjoyed New York City, especially the food!” After graduation in May, Lauren will continue her education at Manhattan College for another year to receive her masters in Elementary and Special Education. Although she will be returning to Manhattan in the Fall, her four year undergraduate experience was something she wouldn’t trade for the world.

“Everything you learn in school, you will see in some shape or form at a school when you begin teaching. So, hold on to every lesson plan you have made throughout your semesters at Manhattan College because you will use them eventually!”


by TAYLOR BRETHAUER, Assistant Editor

There are many things on the mind of the class of 2016: employment, grad school, the future. At Manhattan College, the opportunities to achieve these things are easy and accessible. For senior Biology major Shayna Ginsburg, she credits her success on all of the things she’s experienced since coming to campus four years ago.

After graduation, she is going to grad school at New York Medical College where she will start towards her certification and doctorate in physical therapy, which starts soon after she accepts her diploma in May. The program lasts three years and she’s looking forward to working with people who need help all while learning even more each day.

“I’m looking forward to finally graduating and getting out there working in the career that I want to,” said Ginsburg.

Getting out there has been no easy task. Ginsburg has been focusing on internships and jobs in medical offices in order to get the best hands-on experience possible. She was inspired by seeing the physical therapists work with patients who thought they could never walk again that were able to slowly regain that ability through their help. She also has enjoyed labs where she’s been able to dissect and analyze specimens as part of her training.

Ginsburg plans to pursue physical therapy after graduation in May. Shayna Ginsburg/Courtesy

“I did an internship at a physical therapist office that made me realize that’s what I want to do. [Also], I actually worked with a professor at the New York Medical College before, in the labs. It was a good experience, which helped me apply what I learned here in a medical school laboratory,” said Ginsburg.

She’s been able to see how her education helps in real world applications and appreciates the classes she’s had to take while here at Manhattan. Her biggest helpers were those teachers and advisors that went above and beyond to help her learn as much as she could in order to continue on in grad school

“The biology department is great. The professors and advisors guided me to the courses I need to be in and find out where my interests are,” said Ginsburg.

She knows she’s not the first or the last student pursuing her dream of becoming a physical therapist, but she encourages younger students to check the field out and see if they have any interest.

“It’s okay if you don’t know what you want to do right away. [Physical therapy] wasn’t my first step or plan but soon enough you’ll know what is right for you. And for biology majors, don’t procrastinate. There’s a lot of work with papers, lab reports and studying- just don’t put it off,” said Ginsburg.