Lauren Hagan '12

How has your Hood education benefited you?
Since graduating, I realize that choosing a Hood education was a great decision since I decided to continue to live and work in Frederick. I’m always in good company among many other successful alumni! I’m originally from New Jersey, so my plan was to return to my hometown, but staying in Frederick as a Hood grad has been a very rewarding experience because of the connections I’ve made personally and professionally.

How did your time at Hood prepare you for graduate coursework?
I haven’t decided to go to grad school yet, but my undergrad education at Hood definitely gives me the drive to always continue to learn and grow. I am always looking for new opportunities to learn, and I’m lucky to have an employer that is supportive of professional development.

How did you find the transition from undergraduate the working world?
The transition from college to the working world isn’t an easy one! The professional world brings many new and unpredictable challenges. The way I’ve coped with the transition as a Hood grad is by remaining close with my professors who are always willing to lend advice, staying close with classmates who are having the same struggles and experiences, and recalling my education as the main foundation for tackling challenges.

What were your extracurricular experiences?
Being a resident assistant during my senior year really helped me refine my communication skills. In the workplace, communication is key and it can be a challenge when working with many different people with different personalities. As an RA, we go through a lot of valuable training that teaches us how to manage the way we communicate and the way we respond to others’ communication.

Did you decide your major right away?
I always knew I wanted to be an English major. I love reading, writing, and analyzing. I added a double major in communication arts because I knew it would compliment my writing skills and also put me on a more specific career path.

What is your favorite memory of Hood?
I’m lucky enough to have made friends at Hood who I’m incredibly close with today. Making those friendships is my favorite memory of my time spent at Hood.

Who were your mentors at Hood?
I was lucky enough to have two mentors at Hood. Professor Weinberg led me through my communications studies and is someone I still keep in touch with today about my career. I also took any class offered by Professor Dodman. Not only does he engage his students, English majors or not, he always takes the time to sit down individually to help his students dig deeper to create valuable academic papers.

What is your opinion on the value of a Hood education?
Hood gives students the tools, opportunities, and guidance they need. The value derived from a Hood education is directly impacted by the effort the student puts into it.

What is your opinion on the value of a liberal arts education?
A liberal arts education explores academic areas beyond a student’s main focus of study, and can sometimes create unanticipated challenges. Overcoming those challenges gives students problem solving skills and knowledge that will help them beyond college.

What would you say to students applying to Hood?
I would tell a prospective student that my time at Hood provided me huge challenges followed by incredibly rewarding accomplishments, both academically and personally. My experience at Hood is unlike any other time in my life, and I wouldn’t trade it. To prospective students: Throw yourself into your education and your life at Hood. You will get from Hood what you give.

What role has your Hood education played in your career?
My Hood education gave me problem solving skills that I use professionally and personally. Hood taught me how to learn and challenge myself, which I do every day.

Why did you choose to attend Hood College?
I originally attended a community college in New Jersey and decided to transfer to Hood as a sophomore. I chose Hood because their staff was incredibly helpful with transferring my credits and ensuring that I would graduate on track with the class of 2012. College is a major financial investment, and knowing that my time at community saved me money in the long run and was not a waste of time, hindering my educational path, really was a great relief that I attribute to the guidance of Hood’s faculty and staff.