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Q&A: Katie Herrington, UNB Alumni Student Leadership recipient

Author: UNB Alumni

Posted on Nov 15, 2021

Category: UNB Saint John , Young Alumni , Inspiring Stories , UNB Fredericton


Recipient of a 2021 Alumni Student Leadership Award, UNB Saint John student Katie Herrington shares how the award has positively impacted her UNB experience, how she contributes to student life on campus and why she enjoys studying in the faculty of arts. Throughout her seven years on campus, Katie has volunteered with The Promise Partnership Program, served as writer and editor of the campus newspaper, and initiated several student-led drives to support local non-profits in the Saint John area. 

What inspired you to enroll in UNB Saint John’s faculty of arts?

I actually started my university experience in the nursing program, where I learned through my community nursing placement about the social determinants of health. I became very interested in this topic and how public policy could better take this into account to improve health outcomes for our communities. I realized the best way for me to contribute to this field was for me to switch disciplines and obtain an arts degree, where I major in political science.

What has been the most rewarding part of your academic studies?

I took an experiential learning course in urban politics with Dr. Munoz-Martinez and we had the opportunity to research and present a project on active transportation accessibility in Saint John. It felt great to not just learn in a class setting, but to be able to contribute to research and ideas that can have an immediate impact on our community. It also helped connect me with other leaders in the community who advocate for similar issues.

How do you stay involved in student life on campus? 

Though this has been complicated by the pandemic, I try to stay involved in student life by keeping up with the social media pages and updates of the UNB-SRC, UNB Alumni, and the campus’ clubs and societies. As Editor-in-Chief of The Baron, I’m always keeping up to date on the different events happening on our campus and in Saint John.

What did you enjoy most about being involved in student life on campus?

Because UNB Saint John is a smaller campus, being involved in student life allows you to become acquainted with your fellow students very quickly and not just participate in different events and initiatives, but to play an active part in organizing them and helping to advocate for students in an impactful way to better the campus for everyone.

Can you share one of your fondest or most memorable moments at UNB thus far?

As this is my seventh year as a UNB student, I can’t narrow it down to one single moment. Making connections with important community organizations through my time in nursing and my experiential learning course; raising funds for these organizations with the support of the UNB community; writing for and becoming Editor-in-Chief of The Baron; supporting voting campaigns on campus for our federal elections... I’ve had so many great opportunities at UNB that I will always remember and be grateful for.

How has receiving the Alumni Student Leadership Award positively impacted your UNB experience?

Aside from the significant financial assistance, the recognition of this award means so much to me. I’m so grateful that the UNB community recognizes my potential with this award and it encourages me to continue to do my best as I complete my final year of my arts degree. I’ve also had fellow UNB instructors, peer and alumni congratulate me on receiving this award, which just shows how connected UNB’s community is and how invested they are in seeing their students succeed.

What makes you Proudly UNB?

Building on UNB’s proud legacy as Canada’s oldest university, UNB Saint John has the advantage of being a small, intimate campus which provides a more personalized student experience. Instructors are very accessible and wiIling to provide individual mentoring and advice. I would not be nearly as successful in my degree without the guidance and support of my professors. They’re genuinely invested in you and it makes a huge difference.

What are your future plans once you’ve completed your undergraduate degree?

I’m not entirely sure what my next steps will be after my undergraduate degree, but I’m considering pursuing a Master’s degree in Political Science, Public Policy or Public Administration. I’m also considering running for Saint John City Council in the next election cycle as I’m very invested in local community change.

How do you hope to stay connected to UNB in the future as an alumna?

I hope to stay connected both personally and professionally to UNB and my fellow alumni through the UNB Young Alumni Network by keeping up with their social media pages and events. I also hope in the future that I can be a mentor in some way to UNB students to help them as my fellow peers and instructors helped me through my undergraduate journey.

 

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Learn more about the Alumni Student Leadership Award.