Isabelle Selep

Where were you born: Milwaukee, WI

Where are you from: Milwaukee, WI

Major: Human Development and Family Studies w/ Certificates in Education Policy Studies and Educational Services

Year in school: Class of 2016

Interests/hobbies: Traveling and Dancing

Involvement on campus:

1 year on DUBS Competitive Cheer Squad
4 years Intramural Soccer
2 years with Badger Volunteers

Career aspirations: Education Policy Analyst

How has CAE helped you create your Wisconsin Experience?

CAE has helped me beyond what I can even comprehend. I would most likely not be a student here at Madison without the help of CAE. It has provided me with the proper resources and guidance to succeed. It has helped me grow into the adult I never thought I would be. I went from a freshman who didn’t want to be at Madison to a senior who couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. While CAE has helped me in unmeasurable ways, words cannot express my gratitude, especially for Lauren Szafranski.

What has been a memorable experience in college so far?

(Couldn’t pick which one I liked better)
1.    My most memorable experience of college thus far has to be my junior year when the men’s basketball team beat Kentucky and made it to the NCAA Championship. Running from my apartment down to State Street and being surrounded by my friends and fellow Badgers in one big celebration is something that I could never forget. The feeling that I got confirmed the fact that I attend the best university in the world.
2.    While it may not be a happy memory, the most memorable experience of college occurred my freshman year. My freshman year, I did not adjust well to college life and did not know how to study or use the resources on campus to my benefit. I was failing Chem 103 and was given the choice to drop the class or to stay in it and receive an F. I felt as though I had failed at life and I would never recover from this; it was the hardest choice of my college career. After meeting with several advisors and going through half a box of tissues, I finally made the choice to drop the class. But that experience gave me the kick I needed to focus and reevaluate my choices. Since then I have made a 180 flip and could not be more proud of myself. Dropping a class to being on the Dean’s List consistently shows what an impact it had on me. Although I wish it never happened, I am grateful that it did because it was such a humbling experience and has now made me the ambitious person I am today. I would not have nearly as much drive to succeed if it weren’t for dropping Chem 103.

Describe what you are looking forward to after graduating.

Getting so close to graduation is terrifying, but the one thing I have learned in college is that I love learning and after graduation I look forward to learning more. I plan to attend graduate school to receive a Master’s in Public Policy, and I cannot wait. I do not know what I would do if I didn’t continue my education, so graduate school seems like the only logical choice. There is so much I want to learn, and I do not think I will ever be done learning.

What is one thing you wish you would’ve known coming in as a freshman?

If I had to pick one thing I wish I knew coming in as a freshman, it would be to actually listen to all the advice you get. I feel that all my friends, TAs, advisors, peer mentors, etc., all told me such valuable information, but I never took it seriously. Now as a senior I constantly find myself saying, “I wish I would have done that!” or, “I wish I would have listened.” People don’t give you advice if it isn’t going to help you; it really is for your benefit and is only going to help you succeed.

What tips do you have for getting to know faculty?

Make your time with them count. Get to know them as more than just an advisor/mentor. Members of the faculty are people, too. The simplest of connections can have a lasting impression on you or them. They are there to help you out and you never know when you will need them in the future. Professors that I worked with my freshman year continue to give me advice now that I am applying to graduate programs. My advisor, Lauren, has become not only a role model and mentor but also a great friend, and I plan to continue talking with her when I am no longer at Madison. The connections you make here in Madison are possibly the most important aspects of the Wisconsin Experience. Once a Badger, always a Badger!