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Majors & Degrees

Inspired to Educate

April 19, 2024

By the third grade, Madeline Hegg already knew what she wanted to be when she grew up. Like many individuals who choose to pursue a career in education, she was inspired by teachers throughout her schooling.

“The teachers I’ve had in my educational journey have given me so much and inspired me to do the same for younger students,” Hegg said.

Now in her final semester, Hegg, an Elementary Education major with minors in reading and technology, is currently a student teacher in the Harrisburg School District.

Originally from Mitchell, S.D., she was drawn to Dakota State to earn her degree based on its legacy as a teacher’s college, the technology mission and built-in minor, and the campus size.

“The relationships I’ve built with my university instructors have been amazing,” she said. “They care that I get through school and become a teacher, but they also care about me personally and my goals, aspirations, hobbies, just everything.”

Hegg has grown close to these educators. “They do more than just teach,” she said. “They care. They’re your friend, your mentor, and your guide. The teachers here are 100% invested in their students.”

While all of them inspire Hegg, she especially looks up to Betsy Schamber.

“Every time I’ve mentioned her name, there has been someone who has shared how amazing she was as their teacher in Madison’s middle school,” Hegg said.

Outside of the classroom, Hegg has enjoyed making lifelong friends and finding entertainment in Madison.

“The hard thing is there’s not a lot to do in Madison, but DSU makes up for it with campus activities,” she explained.

One of her favorite memories is attending Zumba classes with all her friends during her freshman year. Another memory is more recent, when Hegg served as a camp counselor for CybHER during the summer of 2023.

“For a week, I got to watch 100 middle school girls gain confidence and knowledge in technology,” she said.

Serving as a camp counselor allowed Hegg to gain more experience as an educator while also enjoying her favorite part of teaching, often referred to as ‘the light bulb moment.’

“Their eyes light up, and they get excited because they’re proud of themselves,” she said. “When a student understands what they’re learning it opens so many opportunities for the next topic, lesson, and subject.”

Hegg is currently finishing up her semester of student teaching, applying for positions in the next school year, and is excited to continue her journey as an educator.

“The relationships that DSU staff have built with me have encouraged me to go out and build those types of relationships with my own students,” she said.

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