I have rewritten the responses below in order to make it more clear
She didn't want me to record the interview but here is a picture of her I found on a Clemson website
These are two emails confirming our meeting to have this interview
Questions and Answers Rewritten
- What do you define success as?
- Finishing a goal, being the best you can be, having a mindset to be the best
- What makes a person successful?
- When a person finishes a goal, completing a task, striving to be the best all the time
- How did you end up where you are today?
- Got a BS in Computer Science from Northeast Louisiana University and then got her MS in Graph Theory at Clemson and then her PhD at Clemson in Graph Theory
- I want to study secondary education of math, what are some pointers to being successful?
- You HAVE to be patient and have a never-ending desire to help others
- Would you describe yourself as successful?
- Yes, even though she isn't where she thought she'd be at this point in her life.
- Is this where you thought you'd be when you were in college?
- "Absolutely not! But I'm ok with where I am"
- How does someone become successful in your field?
- Have to be able to work with people, patience, well-spoken, direct, organized, and passionate
- Would others consider you successful?
- Do you think success is measured by one's self or others?
- One's self
- Lastly, are you happy with where you are today?
- Yes, I love Clemson and like my job even though I'm not what i thought I'd be.
a) I somewhat enjoyed the interview. It was nice getting to know her a little better in order to sort of break down the walls that are built between a professor and a student but it was very awkward at the beginning. She was very friendly but I didn't have much interest in her personal life. I enjoyed asking her about her career because of my current aspirations being to become a secondary education math major. I learned that professors are more normal and human and less scary than one might think. I learned that success is defined differently by all people and it was interesting getting to hear her opinions regarding success and how it is obtained. Overall, I'm glad I was able to meet with her and learn more about math teaching and her definitions of success but I wouldn't interview her again.
I actually really like math
bi) I chose Dr. C because she is a math teacher and I wanted to learn more about that career path and plus she is just a super friendly lady in general.
ii) I wasn't surprised at her answers. I did find it interesting that this career wasn't her initial plan because she seems so good at it. She was very interesting and was happy to hear from her that teaching takes patience and the willingness to help others because I think I am both those things.
iii) A few things I learned from the conversation was that life never really goes as planned and sometimes that can be a good thing. I also realized how well i fit into the secondary education math career and am excited to switch into that major. I also recognized that professors are human too and actually want to help and be understood.
iv) I developed a lot more respect for her and why she does what she does in class and with homework. I can relate to her a little bit more now and see this as an opportunity to really focus on math and how I can become a good teacher. I've realized that all professors are probably way over qualified to do their jobs. Also, I'm glad to know that she is passionate about teaching calculus and will hopefully be a better student in her class by showing up to class more. I deserve that and she deserves that. Other than that, I didn't learn anything else significant from the interview but I'm glad I did it, I just don't think I would do it again.