Two months into this Fall semester, new rhythms and routines are beginning to settle into habit for students across campus. For most, this is another midterm season, another step in the marathon of completing an undergraduate degree. But for the graduating class of 2023, the turning of the leaves that line Redeemer’s pathways, the darker classrooms, and the emergence of Blundstones in place of Birkenstocks—these are all small, subtle changes being soaked up one more time by those students that can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Carina Wolfert, a fourth-year math student , shared what this season has been like for her: “I’m a math major with a double minor in English literature and psychology. I really said, ‘liberal arts!’ With this degree I have a focus in each of the fields—sciences, arts, and social sciences.
“My hopes and dreams? I want to do high school teaching, hopefully math, maybe English. I don’t want to do my BEd at Redeemer; my dad worked here for twenty-five years, and all three of my siblings and in-laws graduated from here. I also went to Christian grade school and high school, so I think it would be good for my character to study elsewhere.
“I’m working on my applications right now. I’m applying in southern Ontario, probably to Brock and Western, and maybe to University of Ottawa. I’ll also apply to the Redeemer program, but Redeemer can only certify you [to teach] up to tenth grade.
“It doesn’t feel like it’s my senior year, but I am getting excited to wrap up. I’m in my last math class, and it’s satisfying to look back. I’m getting better at doing my schoolwork; I am getting better at doing math, at reading, at doing different things that seemed so hard in my first year. It’s fun to look back and see how much I’ve grown.
“As I do wrap up, there is a sense of not taking things for granted. This is actually a unique school and community, and I likely won’t be in a place like this again. I’m trying to make fun of things a little bit less and enjoy them a little bit more. To acknowledge what Redeemer culture is and accept what needs to be accepted with gratitude. I’m trying to approach things with a little more perspective.
“The biggest thing I will miss is being in a community that I am familiar with and in which I am known. I underestimate how unique it is to walk through hallways and recognize people, to chat with them and say, ‘hi.’ I am aware that if I end up at a large university that will not be the case. I anticipate that there will be far less Dutch bingo in my life, and there is something comforting about having a lot of little connections the way I do here.
“As for where I am right now, I would say I’m operating more out of both fear and excitement. I am excited to have my focus shift from just being a student to working towards a more professional goal. I am looking forward to being able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I do love being a student, but it is fun to realize there is more to life than being a student. All this learning will hopefully bear fruit sometime in the near-ish future.”