Hometown: Newtown, Conn.
Major: Health Education Pre-K - 12
WCSU Degree: Bachelor of Science in Health Education
Internships: Student-teaching health and wellness to 5th and 6th graders at Reed Intermediate School in Newtown, Conn.
Activities: WCSU Women's Soccer Team, HPX Club, Education Club
Honors and Awards: Anthony and Julia Caraluzzi Family Scholarship, 2006; WCSU Honors Program; Dean's List Honors every semester; Dean's Award for the School of Professional Studies; WCSU Scholar-Athlete Award; WCSU Women's Soccer NSCAA All-New England Second Team; WCSU Women's Soccer All-Little East Converence Second Team; Pi Lambda Theta Honors Society; 3.89 GPA
Nicole Sieber decided to come to WestConn because it was close to home and she knew "that I could greatly benefit and flourish in the prestigious education program." She also recognized that she could play competitive Division III Soccer "for a renowned program and an amazing coach and team. We truly are a family."
Sieber says she decided to major in Health Education because "I have a passion for health and wellness. I love exercising, eating healthfully and doing my best to be a genuinely healthy and good person in every aspect of my life. I also have a love for children. What could be better than being around kids everyday and teaching them to be lifelong learners and productive members of society with outstanding health and wellness. I feel very strongly about teaching our youth how to lead healthy lives and providing them with the life skills and tools to do so. The classroom is the farthest thing from mundane and ordinary. I am fond of the idea of being in an unpredictable, dynamic and ever-changing environment."
When asked about her influences at the university, Sieber points to her soccer coach, Joe Mingachos, and her supervisor for the Health Education program, Assistant Professor of Health Promotion and Exercise Virginia Verhoff. "They are both mentors to me and have tremendously contributed to my development and success here at WestConn," Sieber says. "I cannot thank them enough for the time and effort they have spent helping and guiding me through this collegiate journey. They always had my best interests in mind."
Asked what she will remember most about her WestConn experience, Sieber says, "I have two memorable experiences. The first was in my junior year at WestConn during the soccer season. Our team won the Little East Championship Finals, which took place on our home field. I felt extremely proud, satisfied and thankful to have won such a difficult battle with such an amazing team and coaching staff. I will forever remember my time and journey with the Women's Soccer Team. Another memorable experience is actually one that is taking place right now, and that would be student teaching. Student teaching in a health and wellness classroom full of fifth and sixth graders has been the most stressful and challenging, but enlightening and rewarding, experience I've had so far at WestConn and in my life. I have grown an immense amount these past few months and I have learned a great deal. This experience has undoubtedly prepared me for the teaching and professional world.”
After graduation, Sieber plans to apply to graduate school at WestConn in hopes of starting her studies in the fall 2010 semester. "I will be playing one more season of soccer because I did not play my sophomore year and therefore have one more year of athletic eligibility," she says. "I will be applying to the Masters of Science in Education program with a concentration in biology. Teaching health and physical education have been my ideal goals for many years now. Finding a job in this field may be a challenge. I am confident that I will be satisfied working anywhere in the health field. I have also been involved in coaching soccer and I definitely see that in my future as well."
Sieber’s advice to new students entering WCSU is: “Be proactive. It will be extremely important and beneficial for you to get involved right away in the college community. Try out for an athletic team; check out the wide variety of clubs offered; get to know your professors, classmates and fellow students; peruse the WestConn website for featured events; and simply take advantage of what WestConn has to offer. Also, do not ever be afraid to ask questions. Questions will get you answers, and answers will be your guide to receiving the best possible education and overall college experience. The WestConn family will always be happy to answer or address any questions, comments or concerns you may have. You are certainly not alone. Interact, get involved and stay proactive. These are some of the most critical and instrumental years of your life. They also happen to pass by extremely fast. Take full advantage of these pivotal years and utilize all that WCSU has to offer.”