Mentorship Experience Recap!

My mentee’s name is Hanna Lipic and she is from Cincinnati, Ohio. She is majoring in Early Childhood Education and loves to snowboard. When introducing myself to Hanna, I immediately found many aspects of our lives in common. I am also from Cincinnati and she actually went to a private high school that is located in my school district. So, our high schools were less than ten minutes from each other. In addition, we both have the same major which means that we take many of the same classes and have similar interests. Both of us love to work and play with kids and have wanted to be teachers since we were young. We were both also very involved in high school, especially with service, which is why we are able to be in Advocates for Communities and Education Scholars (ACES).  We do have some differences though. For example, while I love to watch sports, Hanna really enjoys playing sports. She joined the Ohio State Ski Team and goes on various trips with them since she is a very good snowboarder. She also works with kids through empower sports where they come to campus and learn different sports. When I work with kids on campus it is usually more academic based, so a similar activity but different focus.

I think Hanna grew from first to second semester because she found where she fit in and enjoyed herself. Ohio State can seem a little overwhelming at first which she was nervous about at the beginning of the year. It can seem like a big task to find friends and get involved, but she seems to have lots of friends and be very involved in clubs that she enjoys. In addition, I think that she has grown in learning how to manage her time well in college and how to get all of the work done. She seems to be excelling in her classes which is awesome to watch since college can be challenging. It also seems like she became more comfortable as the year went on both in classes and in ACES because she participated more and was more outgoing.

As a mentor and leader, I also grew throughout the year. I am typically a shy person when I am not completely comfortable around people, but I easily felt comfortable talking to Hanna and asking questions about classes, involvement, and life soon after meeting her. I think I have become better at stepping out of my comfort zone through the experience and better at taking initiative too. I also learned how to lead and be a mentor without being annoying. I reached out and said hi whenever I saw Hanna but knew I did not need to check on her constantly since she is very independent.

In terms of mentoring, socialization, and orientation, I helped Hanna by giving her advice. I told her in the beginning of the year how important it was to get involved and join clubs to find friends. I also mentioned that I found my best friends just by walking around on the floor and getting to know other ACES members, so that was my suggestion to her. As she began to build relationships, she was then able to find many friends. In addition, I made sure that she knew she could always ask me questions about anything related to Ohio State such as classes, things to do, or general questions.

I think mentoring a person no matter their age helps to build leadership skills. In many jobs, being able to mentor kids or other employees is an important aspect of the job, so working on this skill early is beneficial for the future. For example, as a teacher, I will be mentoring kids, so even though in this case Hanna is much older than the students I will be teaching, the skills I learned are still applicable. Another benefit of the mentorship program is allowing the first years to feel welcome and feel like they belong on campus. I think having a connection with an older student soon after starting college makes you feel more at ease because you know you can always ask them questions if needed. I certainly felt that when I was a first-year mentee and it helped to relieve a little bit of the stress that came with starting college. Furthermore, in ACES often the first years know each other well and the second years know each other well because each grade lived together their first year, however, the different grades do not know each other well. The mentorship program helps to connect first- and second-years students. Therefore, overall, I think the mentorship program is a wonderful program because it assists the first-year students in their transition to college while allowing second-year students to gain leadership skills.

Explore Columbus Part 2!!

For our second explore Columbus, Hanna and I debated going to a variety of places. We were deciding between Jeni’s and North Market when we were originally going to do it, but due to a last-minute conflict had to reschedule. The next week when we decided to go it was a colder day and sort of gloomy so neither of us really felt in the mood for ice cream anymore. North market was also further to go and was not going to fit into our schedules for that day as well, so we decided to see if there was a coffee shop nearby that we could try out. Hanna and I were in the same math class everyday second semester, so we went after math and as we were leaving asked people if they had any suggestions. Someone suggested that we go to Kafe Kerouac which we both have heard of but neither of us have ever been to. Since it is so close by we felt like it was something we should try out while at Ohio State. We were on the other side of campus, so we took a bus there and learned on the way that neither of us actually like coffee which is funny since we had decided to go to a coffee shop.

When we got there, it was not what either of us really expected but was a cool experience. They had lots of records, books, art pieces, and even a stage. We went in the middle of the afternoon and there were lots of people there. Both of us got hot chocolate and liked how everyone was given their drinks in different mugs. Hanna and I agreed that it was some of the best hot chocolate we have ever had.

As we walked to the bus, rode the COTA, and sat in the coffee shop, we were able to bond over a variety of things. We talked a lot about math because that played a big part in both of our school work since it was five credit hours. At the time we were in the middle of projects and that day I had presented so we talked about presentations that had been happening. We even got to talk about the drama that had happen in math class.

In addition to math, I had Hanna go through what classes she was taking next semester so that I could give her pointers or tell her if I had any of the same professors she was going to have. Being the same major really helped us connect through school. It ended up that most of her classes do not have professors listed yet, so we are not sure yet. I made sure to tell her she could always text me and ask questions this summer or next year since I have been through year two in the pre-major and the transition to getting into the major.

I was also excited to hear about the updates with ski team and the new trips Hanna is going on with them. Additionally, she seems to have stayed very involved with clubs around campus her whole semester, so I enjoyed hearing that she plans to continue these next year. We both are going to be nannies this summer in Cincinnati too so we may even see each other around as we take our kids to different activities around the city throughout the summer.

I would definitely recommend Kafe Kerouac to a friend because it is so close and has lots of seating. I think it creates an atmosphere where you could talk to a friend or do work. In addition, they have good hot chocolate which I would definitely recommend, and I would assume their coffee is also good.

I think this experience highlights even more for me how many little spots in Columbus and hidden gems there are. I do not know that I would have just seen the outside of Kafe Kerouac and gone but having it recommended by a friend and the fact that it was close by made us go and really enjoy the experience. My favorite part as I learn more about Columbus is finding these cool little areas. After living in Columbus for two years, I still feel like I have barley seen any of the city and neighborhoods even though I have been to quite a few. I would recommend to other mentor and mentees to keep exploring Columbus and step out of your comfort zone to try new things because that is how you find the most interesting experiences!

Second Semester Interview with Hanna!

My mentee Hanna Lipic and I have enjoyed seeing each other more often this semester. We have our math for elementary teachers’ class together which is every day of the week, so we have been able to get to know each other even better and bond in a more academic setting. She is still an Early Childhood Education major and says she is now really enjoying the major because she likes experiencing what her future is going to be like this early on in her college career. She is in the first educational experience program (FEEP) at Old Orchard Elementary in Columbus City Schools. She enjoys her third-grade class and has learned a lot from her cooperating professional.

On campus she is mainly involved with ski team and empower sports. She has gone on lots of trips and made lots of friends though ski team. Additionally, empower sports is a club that meets every Tuesday. Then on Sundays they go to the ARC and play different sports with kids with autism. Since Hanna enjoys both of these tremendously, she plans to stay involved with them and maybe even get more involved though running for officer positions. She feels like she is involved in a good amount of stuff and is able to be involved while keeping good grades. She uses a planner to help keep track of everything and makes sure she continues keeping up with assignments. Hanna tries to work at least one day ahead on assignments so that she can stay involved. This also goes along with her goal for this semester. She wants to make sure to do her homework ahead of time. I have this goal too, so hopefully we can help each other reach our goals.

In addition to ski team and empower sports, Hanna has enjoyed being involved in ACES. She said one thing that surprised her were the number of outside speakers, but she has enjoyed all of them. Another positive is the living learning community. It is nice to be able to walk to meetings together with others and she has been able to make lots of friends. It is exciting be so close to everyone on the floor. One recommendation she has though is changing the times of the events even more. She said her and many of her friends are busiest during the week and may have events every week night. Hanna suggested having more events on the weekend like Sunday afternoons.

In terms of careers, Hanna’s plans have not changed since first semester. Especially with FEEP, she has found her love for teaching and education is still present. She is excited to be a teacher after graduation. With graduation, she plans to use the Career Services office to help her as she applies for jobs. She has not utilized the resource yet in her college career but knows that in the next few years she should learn more about it.

I also learned a few more fun facts about Hanna during my interview. Her favorite memories from last semester occurred on game days. She loves the atmosphere and cheering for the buckeyes. Hanna and I both seem to have some of our favorite Ohio State memories at the football games. In addition, we discussed what has surprised her most about Ohio State since arriving on campus and she said that she has been surprised how small it has become. While Ohio State is a huge place with tens of thousands of students, she has been able to find her groups and communities which has shrunk the size of campus to her. I am looking forward to the rest of the semester as our relationship further grows.

Explore Columbus Semester 1!!

As Hanna and I discussed where we would like to go in Columbus, we both thought food sounded like a good option. Hanna has been to a few places around Columbus since her older sister also goes to Ohio State, so we wanted to try something new. We both enjoy the Short North area, and wanted to grab either dessert, lunch, or dinner. Hanna liked the idea of ice cream, so we debated whether we should go to Jeni’s or Simply Rolled since both are more local and in Short North. Since the thrill of having rolled ice cream at least once in your life has not died down, we decided that would be a fun opportunity since Hanna has never eaten rolled ice cream. Later, we realized that there actually is a new Simply Rolled in Cincinnati where we are both from, but this did not stop us. We ended up having to reschedule because both of us procrastinated papers that were due the day after our originally scheduled time. At least we are similar though even if procrastination is bad.

So, a few weeks later, we went to Simply Rolled on a Friday afternoon once we were both out of class. I met Hanna at Smith Steeb. We headed over to the COTA stop on High Street and took the 2 bus straight down to Simply Rolled. Luckily, we were able to go an hour or two after the Veteran’s Day parade ended in Short North, so we had no problems getting there on the COTA. As we rode down the bus, we were able to discuss our classes and major. Since I switched my major to be early childhood education in the middle of last year, we have classes overlapping so it was nice to compare teachers and which classes we are taking versus which ones we have left. Since I went to Simply Rolled last year, they have changed some of the menu, so it was nice to see the new options. The people before us in line got these huge cotton candy burritos. They contained cotton candy rolled ice cream with sprinkles, fruity pebbles, and marshmallows. Then it was all rolled in a cotton candy burrito. They were crazy to see because they were so big that Hanna and I were amazed someone could eat all of that. Hanna ended up getting the cookie dough rolled ice cream and I got the buckeye. Watching the workers make the rolled ice cream is still memorizing to me even having seen it before.

As we ate our ice cream, I enjoyed discussing all of our similarities. We talked about more of our big assignments coming up for the rest of the semester. Furthermore, we compared the courses we are taking next semester. We are both in the same math class, so it will be good to know more people in that class in case one of us ever needs help. After discussing classes, we began discussing education and jobs. Hanna is trying to decide what she wants to do over this summer as I know a lot of others are at this point in the year. I enjoyed learning about her past work experiences in babysitting and working at a pool. I even got to hear a story about a mission trip that she has gone on for a few years. She had a near death experience though, so she does not think she will be participating in that one again. For education and early childhood education specifically, it is important that we have lots of experiences working with groups of students not just a few children, so we were thinking about how to incorporate this into our future summer plans since both of us have been nannies in the past.

I also enjoyed learning about other life updates not relating to education or our major. Hanna is going on a trip with the Ohio State Ski Club out west and has been looking forward to it for a while, so it is exciting for that to be coming up soon! I find it really cool that she snowboards because I used to ski and always thought snowboarding would be much harder. We also talked about other random things like going out with friends and good places to eat. I gave her some ideas on how to finish up the volunteer hours for this semester but am excited she was able to complete all of her required ACES event early on in the semester, so she does not have to stress about that as we move into finals. Overall, our explore Columbus was a success and I look forward to learning more about Hanna throughout the rest of the year! I would definitely recommend Simply Rolled to a friend because it is easily accessible, everyone loves ice cream, and have a great environment that allows people to just sit and talk.

Mentor/Mentee First-Semester Interview

This year I have the opportunity to mentor a freshman in the ACES program. Her name is Hanna Lipic and she is an Early Childhood Education major just like me. When I asked her how she decided on this major, we bonded over the fact that we have similar stories. Hanna said that when she was young she loved playing with and working with kids. One of her neighbors used to bring over math problems and Hanna would teach her how to do them on a white board she had in her room. She said she loves when she is able to see students get that “click” in their understanding of a concept. In relation to becoming a teacher, education is very important to her. She said she prefers to study in the afternoon so that her night is free for other activities. She also likes to work ahead and start studying a few days before because it helps her to be able to balance academics and involvement. To study, she likes to review her quizzes and old notes and her dorm is her favorite place to study currently. So far, her most challenging class has been her food science class. It is for a general education requirement and is difficult because it does not relate to her major at all. They talk about what happens to food when it goes in your body and about carbs and proteins.

Related to her major, one of the organizations Hanna plans to get involved with on campus is an education club called OSEA. This club has academic events that involved professional development through speakers in the education field. It also has many social events to allow members of the club to get to know each other. Additionally, Hanna is excited to join the ski team and compete in races during the winter and spring. Furthermore, getting involved with service on campus is important to her because of her background with it. In high school, she led Lions CARE which is an informative club about animals and endangered species. Additionally, she participated in relay for life, took part in a club that makes toys for animals and shelters, and attended many days of service. She does not know what type of service she will get involved with on campus but is excited for the opportunities available.

Service is one of the reasons Hanna joined ACES. She looks forward to the encouragement to get more involved in community service at Ohio State, but does think it may be hard to meet the hours. ACES most directly relates to her major and brings lots of opportunities she would not otherwise receive though academic, service, and social events. Being able to be a part of the honors and scholars’ program also brings many benefits.

Similarly, ACES will help her in her career. Hanna plans to enter the workforce right after graduation and become a teacher. She said she would love to go back to Cincinnati and teach in Lakota Local Schools, which is the school district she grew up in. When I asked her what grade she likes the most, she said that she has always loved second grade. After she gains experience as a teacher, she would love to become a principal at an elementary school but thinks it is important to be a teacher first. In case her plan does not work, she said she might like to be the director of a fitness center or daycare. She worked as a swim instructor over the summer and really enjoyed that, so this could be a type of extension off of that.

So far at Ohio State she has learned how important it is to find a close group of friends. Her older sister goes here too and one of the pieces of advice she gave Hanna to make the university feel smaller was to have a close group of friends. Hanna has found that to be true in the first few weeks of school. Additionally, she was surprised by how easy it is to get around campus. She noted that at first Ohio State felt huge, but it no longer does.

I am excited about all I learned about Hanna in the interview and for what is to come as I get to know her even better over the year. It is helpful to know the class she is struggling in and what she is worried about with ACES. This will be able to help me check to see if she needs any assistance in those areas. I know that at first it was hard for me to be able to get all of my service hours, so I will be able to provide her advice. We also take many of the same classes, so I can suggest GEs and be a reference in many of her education classes. Furthermore, I think learning about the areas we relate in including study habits and clubs can me to be there for Hanna whenever needed.

English Primary Source Analysis

In English 1110, we are required to write a research paper for the class. The topic of my class is cities, so as my topic I chose to research cultural tourism as it relates to the city. One of the first assignments to the class was to choose a primary source and then analyze it while relating back to what we want to discuss in our main paper. This analysis challenged me to look at a source in a different way while relating it to a topic I knew very little information about.

FInal ARP 1-2kj0te4


ACES Film Project

Below is the PDF of my ACES film project presentation. For this presentation, myself and three others watched the movie Finding Home which describes the current sex trafficking in Cambodia and the creation of the Ralpha House. The project allowed me to gain further knowledge on many of the problems occurring today and analyze them. I also connected aspects of them to the ACES pillars.

Finding Home Presentation-266qafx

Getting to Know Erin

Hi, my name is Erin McElroy and I am a first-year pre-education student and in the ACES (Advocates for Communities and Education Scholars) program. I grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio and went to Sycamore High School. Living in Cincinnati and going to a school that provided many opportunities, I was able to develop and find some of my passions. Throughout junior high and high school, I sung in a choir called the Cincinnati Children’s Choir. I was able to travel to really interesting places in the United States and around the world and develop my love for singing. I also became passionate about working with special needs students. I worked with these students both in clubs and throughout the school day in classes. In high school, I also really enjoyed volunteering and giving back which grew my interest in the scholars program at Ohio State. I have always loved school and been a hardworking and conscientious student. I have also always had a passion for math and science. Until sophomore year, I wanted to be a junior high math teacher. Now, I want to teacher 3rd or 4th grade, so I am majoring in Early Childhood Education. I plan to then get an endorsement in 4th and 5th grade while I also minor in disability studies. Throughout college so far, I have joined OSEA which is a teaching related club. Furthermore, I am a part of Pen Pals where I write to a fifth grader in Columbus City Schools every other week. I am joining a choir second semester and plan to join something to help continue my work with special needs students in the future. I am excited to continue to explore Ohio State and all that it has to offer.

Year in Review

[ “Year in Review”  is where you should reflect on the past year and show how you have evolved as a person and as a student.  You may want to focus on your growth in a particular area (as a leader, scholar, researcher, etc.) or you may want to talk about your overall experience over the past year.  For more information, go to: Delete these instructions and add your own post.]