Stephanie plans to graduate this spring and get her bachelors degree in mathematics from the University of Illinois at Springfield. “The program is only online so I’m not even going anywhere,” she says. “I’m just trying to find a full-time job. I would love to continue to work for Debbie but it all depends on the money because you have to pay for college and nothing is for free.” kr
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Cool fact about her hometown Lutherstadt-Wittenberg
“My hometown is famous in America because it’s the birthplace of the Lutheran reformation; that’s why it’s called: Lutherstadt-Wittenberg. It’s called the city of Luther; it’s an old German name for ‘white mountain’.”
First impressions of America
"When I came here the first thing I noticed there was no walkway. In Europe, you walk everywhere and in Japan you take a train or ride a bike. Then I came over here and I was like woah, why is everyone driving a car? So I went through getting my drivers license, which in Germany never expires, but when I came here they tell me, ‘Well, it’s good for five years and then you have to renew it,’ but that’s the difference in the culture.”
Need a tutor? Here’s how… How does someone become a tutor?
"I usually tell them to fill out a form—they have to—and they give us info like what class they are taking and what do they need help with. Most of them are ready for help. We give them resources that are available to the students such as one-on-one peer tutoring, online tutoring, supplemental instruction for biology and chemistry courses, and math and accounting tutoring."
“They need to have a 2.5 GPA, an A in the class that they want to tutor, and they need to get permission from an instructor or department chair of the specific program. They would fill out a form and we would give them training which takes three hours. Mrs. Webb holds workshops once a month and we try to accommodate as many people as possible. We always have interest in hiring new people. A lot of people don’t hear about this program so I would say five to ten people apply per semester; we do a lot of recruiting.”
“I always encourage students to apply for tutoring ASAP. As soon as you know that you’re taking a class that you might not be very comfortable with, don’t wait until the very last minute or until the first test; come in right away because you never know, you might need it.”
“Whenever you tutor someone you always have to be up-to-date. With foreign languages you can’t be stuck in one place. If they have a question you want to be able to answer it. I’ve also learned that I need to be honest and sometimes I don’t know the answer. That’s kind of hard for me to admit, but then I tell the student, ‘You know what? I don’t know the answer right now. I’m going to have to look it up,’ and the students really appreciate that.
“Another is patience, I would say that I’m a patient person but with tutoring and especially with math you have to be so patient. You have to give them a chance to think it through and sometimes it takes a bit longer to get the right answer but that’s the ultimate goal.”
Visiting her hometown
“I try to go home once a year. My parents are older and they waited a long time before they had me. I’m their only child and they really miss me.”
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