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Maggie Rector ′11

Hometown: Peachtree City, GA
Major: English
Minor: Education
Fun Fact: “I’m sort of outdoorsy.”

You hail all the way from Peachtree. What made Rhodes worth the drive?
My mom read about Rhodes in the book Colleges That Change Lives. I’m the oldest and the first to go to college, so my mom was really excited and went on all my college visits [laughs]. I knew I wanted to go to a small school in a beautiful setting, so I was attracted to Rhodes. I thought about going somewhere mountainous, but a city like Memphis provides art, restaurants so many opportunities for me to work and serve. That’s why I’m at Rhodes.

You’re an English major, but what’s the story behind your Education minor?
What I loved about Rhodes was that I could come and take lots of different classes and didn’t have to decide day one what I wanted to major in. After being introduced to the English Department, I decided to major in English and concentrate on learning to communicate well. As for my Education minor, I began college interested in teaching. That desire was strengthened through relationships I built with professors and experiences in and out of the classroom.

With Rhodes’ help you were able to take that passion for teaching all the way to Chile during your semester abroad. Tell us about that.
I wanted to study Spanish and Education. I found a comparative education and social change program in Chile, where I was able to live, teach and learn in a Mapuche village. One of the most amazing aspects of the experience was how I was treated like a member of my homestay family. The program was expensive and I didn’t know how it would be possible. What’s so great about Rhodes was that through earning the Buckman Scholarship, they were able to help make it happen for me. It was one of my most valuable Rhodes experiences, and it wasn’t even at Rhodes.

Coming back from that and now nearing graduation, what’s next for you?
My Memphis and study abroad experiences have made me even more passionate about education. Just being in Memphis and in the classrooms here has supported my decision to pursue teaching. I’ve been gifted with incredible teachers here at Rhodes, and I hope I will be that for others. After graduation, I’m headed to an Atlanta elementary school as a Teach for America Corps member.

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Amanda February 24, 2011

This interview is so valuable! Thanks for posting these kinds of experiences on your website. Maggie′s story is inspiring! (She′s really pretty too!) I hope, one day, I can go to Rhodes and study Spanish, English and education. What an awesome school!!