But for Ohio State Mansfield: Scott Schag

Scott Schag

Scott Schag takes a minute out of his day in the Education Resource Room.

The Ohio State University at Mansfield was supposed to be a stepping stone to his future. Instead, Scott Schag found himself “falling in love” with campus and, in turn, found it to be a launching ground for a remarkable college career.

“I had known of it and the great value that it presented,” he explains, “But had intended on using it to gain transfer credits and then leave after a year since I was undecided.”

That first year, however, would bring something to Scott’s attention. “All of my friends who had gone away to school had bad experiences. They were in classes where the professor was never there and were being taught by a Teaching Assistant, or they were paying out the wazoo for tuition and becoming bogged down in loans.” His experience was markedly different. “I looked around and loved all of my classes, was maintaining an amazing GPA, knew my professors by name, had not accrued any debt, and really loved the community of the campus. I was hooked.”

It was not just his success that he enjoyed, it was the people who helped along the way. “Professors really take the time to make sure that you are doing well,” notes Scott, “The fact that you can approach them about issues is great! The small classes lend themselves to that amazingly well.”

Scott enjoyed his classes, and has no shortage of them to prove it. “I think I liked the campus so much that I hopped around majors in order to stay longer,” he jokes, “I changed four times from Zoology to Theatre to History to Education.” It would prove to be a combination of two of those stops that would prove to be his final destination.

Scott first got involved in theater when he was asked to help backstage during Ohio State Mansfield’s collaboration with Mansfield Youth Theater’s production of Beauty and the Beast, Jr. Scott enjoyed working with young actors and that experience caused him to enroll in a class in which he was immersed in a local classroom. He was not disappointed. Working on stage and in the classroom were so enjoyable that it would finally settle a long time question of “What should my major be?” for good.

Scott settled on an early childhood education major with a minor in theater. While the choice took time, the Shelby native could not be more sure of it. “It means the difference between a practice and a profession,” says Scott, “It affords me the opportunity to be an informed academic making a difference in every classroom and every child.”

In his 7 years on campus, Scott has been involved in a variety of things on campus and in the community. His stay has seen him as a Writing Consultant in the Campus Writing Center, a Welcome Leader for student orientations, a member of the English Club, Theatre Club, Club Ed, volunteering at local non-profits, and on stage. Scott’s most recent show, 9 to 5 The Musical, marks his 30th production. He has gone from backstage to filling roles such as the Cat in the Hat in Seussical the Musical, playing Seymour in Little Shop of Horrors, The UPS man in Legally Blonde, and Victor Frankenstein in Playing with Fire: After Frankenstein.

When asked to name one facet of his experience in particular, he does not hesitate. “I really love working with [Theater Director and Professor] Joe Fahey. He makes everything so much fun when you’re an actor and he really cares about the experience that you have.” Scott also notes that Dr. Fahey is not afraid to act as a stand in when props are unavailable. “During one of my first shows, he was kind enough to act as a human roadblock for me to fall over repeatedly. It was frightening and hilarious at the same time.”

When he is handed his M.Ed in Education, he knows exactly where he wants to go next. “I want to teach in the New York City public school system and get involved in theatre along the way, whether performing myself or being involved in Children’s theatre.”

As he enters the world stage, Scott is preparing to become an educator just like the ones he met at Ohio State Mansfield. “I never felt that a professor didn’t want to be there. They want you to succeed!” And as a result, those professors have watched Scott do just that.

But for Ohio State Mansfield: Jami Kinton

Jami interviews an Ohio State Mansfield student for an article in the News Journal.

Authors: Jason Spoon, Megan Bailey, Mindy McKenzie

Jami Kinton wasn’t ready to leave Mansfield after graduating from high school; ten years later, she still isn’t. As a newspaper reporter, model, actress, performer, and TV host, Jami continues to flourish in her hometown. This dedicated young woman is certain that she “cannot fail here.” Jami credits her drive to succeed to strong support from faculty and staff at the Mansfield campus of the Ohio State University.

Jami never thought she’d be asked to name 100 rocks, and she certainly couldn’t have guessed at the effect it would have. When she signed up for a Geology course at OSU Mansfield, it was with some anxiety. She was convinced that this wouldn’t be a very strong course for her, and was worried about the outcome. She needn’t have been. The “rock test” was given as one of the first class assignments, and she aced it. Encouraged by this early success, Jamie went on to get an A in the class, and ultimately become a teaching assistant in the Geology program.

But it was more than rocks that appealed to Jami about OSU Mansfield. The small class sizes at the Mansfield campus were a perfect fit for her. While getting lost in the freshman crowd at a larger campus may be fine for some, it just seemed overwhelming to Jami. Speaking about the intimate classroom setting at OSU Mansfield, Jami says, “This kind of atmosphere really helped me to do as well as I did.” For Jami, a bigger setting would have just meant being more inhibited; at the Mansfield campus, she was anything but.

Each day, she arrived on campus at 6:30 in the morning and normally stayed until the math lab closed at 8:00 at night. During her time at OSU Mansfield, Jami was involved in Spanish Club, Campus Activities Board (CAB), Buckeye Ambassadors, and was president of the Women’s Club. All of these activities, along with her teaching assistant position, meant that college was Jami’s primary focus. She jokingly admits to going to only one party while in college, but she has no regrets. “I still made a ton of friends, but I made them in school,” Jami says. It was that same kind of determined focus that would pay off later in her professional career.

There is no doubt that Jami has made a name for herself. Her drive and ambition have resulted in many professional opportunities, not just in Mansfield, but in Columbus and Cleveland as well. Whether working with Radio Disney, serving as the in-park host for the Cleveland Indians, hosting Ohio Idol in Columbus, modeling and acting for six different agencies, hosting for the Fashion TV network, acting as a beauty contributor for Nigel Barker’s website, or hosting the Cash Explosion Roadshow for the Ohio Lottery, Jami works tirelessly to advance her career and be an example of what hard work can do. And she is quick to credit OSU Mansfield with a piece of that success.

She attributes this success to being on a campus where professors truly care about the futures of their students, and are willing to do whatever it takes to help them do well. It was this personal attention from staff and faculty at OSU Mansfield that meant so much to Jami. These connections allowed her to form lasting relationships which would lead to employment opportunities. Ultimately, Jami knew that she would have to spend some time in Columbus to finish her degree, and it was with tears in her eyes that she made the initial drive south. Columbus, for all its supposed advantages, just wasn’t Mansfield.

Jami loves the Mansfield community and cherishes her time spent there. Although her many jobs give her opportunity to travel, it is always to Mansfield she returns home. The strong sense of community and purpose that her time at OSU Mansfield helped instill in her are part of what keep her here still. Jami is happiest when helping other people, and within the Mansfield community she has found many people to help and many stories to tell. Among those stories, she may pause long enough to consider her own.

Few people are as driven as she is, and fewer still turn that drive into such success. For Jami, much of that achievement has its roots at the Mansfield Campus of The Ohio State University. And until an offer rolls in to host American Idol, you can expect to continue seeing her successes right here in Mansfield.

But for Ohio State Mansfield, Jami might not have fulfilled her aspirations and launched a great career right here in her hometown.