Hometown: Ossining, N.Y.
Major: History - Revolutions
WCSU Degree: Master of Arts in History
Activities: Work full time at the Rockefeller Archive Center in Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.
Honors and Awards: 3.79 GPA
Ossining, N.Y. resident Susan Irving started working toward her graduate degree at SUNY New Paltz in New Paltz, N.Y., and stayed there for two semesters. She decided not to continue with her studies because she wanted to obtain a Master’s Degree in History and that wasn't available at New Paltz. "I am an archivist and I love history, which is part of my job, so I was more inclined for an M.A. in history to help expand me personally and as a professional in my field," Susan explains.
"WestConn was the perfect place, and because there are no schools between the Bronx and Albany, N.Y., that offer an M.A. in history, WestConn fulfills a much-needed and well-rounded program for history students. WestConn had the most flexible program, it was affordable, and it has highly recommended professors. It was an easy, workable commute from New York and it offered a variety of historical focuses that didn’t pigeonhole me into one particular area."
Irving has a great deal of praise for her professors at WestConn. “I have 'plagued' many teachers, but Assistant Professor of History and Non-Western Cultures Dr. Michael Nolan was a bit of a mentor. He was so helpful and so knowledgeable that I don’t think I would have been able to do this without him. He kept me as sane as possible!”
Asked what she will remember most about her WestConn experience, Irving says, "I have had numerous memorable experiences, but one that stands out would have to be listening to Marlene Dietrich in Dr. Nolan’s class while studying the origins of WWII and realizing a portion of the students in the room had never heard of her. Also, many people haven’t heard of an archive before so it was interesting to see the dynamics in the classroom.”
After graduation, Irving ’s long-term goal is "possibly obtaining a second master's degree and continuing in the archival field."
Irving’s advice to new students entering WCSU is: “Get to know the program coordinator and stay focused, because although it’s difficult it’s worth it in the end. WestConn offers a great opportunity for flexibility and focus while working.”