Student Spotlight: Abbey Millerbernd

Abbey Millerbernd is rounding up her last week as a junior transfer student! Ever wonder why some people transfer colleges and how they jump into a new environment? This Linwood, Minnesota native is the president of the Transfer Student Organization and is enthusiastic about spreading the word about how to better support new Katie’s that join our community. Abbey attended the college of Saint Scholastica before becoming a wildcat. She is a member of Lambda Sigma Tau, a member of the ASL Club, is on the SEEK Team, and is a proud worker at the Info Center! Abbey is currently re-watching orange is the new black and LOVES CATS!

 

Abbey provides a unique perspective on a transfer student's experience at St. Kate’s.  

“I am not a perfect person, but I do have experiences that have helped me become who I am today. Just because my past is my past, does not mean I need to shut the door on it. Accept the things I can not change, but the courage to change the things I can. I have the experiences that I want to share to other people, share my knowledge and the great things that other people have shared to me!”- Millerbernd

Q: Tell me about your college experience at your first college.

Abbey: I fell in love with my first college! Of course I had the basic college life at first. My second year came with more struggles and more changes. My first year of college I had a lot of fun and met a lot of people. My second year I was given the opportunity to play softball in college! Being able to play ball again and be part of a team was the best thing that I could have ever asked for! I played with some amazing women and I could not have asked for better people in my life! I struggled a little bit more my second year but softball definitely gave me a purpose in life. Though I wasn't playing as much, it didn't matter. All that mattered was that I was there to support my team and my team supported me.

Q: What colleges were you looking to transfer to and why?

Abbey: I decided that I wanted to transfer in August of 2016, and then started school here in September! It was a very short decision but it was the best one. Why? Well at first, I was a psychology major with the intention of pre-occupational therapy. During my struggles my first semester of my second year of school, I failed anatomy. Okay? So whatever, then I decided to just do psychology with counseling. During my second year, I decided to take ASL because I needed a language and I had seen an interpreter when I was growing up and loved what she was doing for this individual. So when I decided to go into psychology and counseling, I thought it would be a great idea to do counseling for the deaf because I knew ASL. I chose St. Kate’s because it was the best college for American Sign Language Interpreting.

Q: What were some challenges throughout the whole transfer process?

Abbey: OMG YES!!! The fact that everyone my age already had friends and groups that didnt want a new girl a part of. The one thing I struggled with the most when first coming here was how big the campus was, it is a lot larger the Scholasica! Secondly, I couldnt find anything to do on campus, there just wasn't enough going on and that was not what I was used to.

Q: What were some helpful resources?

Abbey: The most helpful resources on campus were the girls that were already students. I was able to ask them more personal questions but they also helped me with little things, like figuring out D2L. I also worked closely with the O’Neil center and my first semester I sat down with them and figured out what was expected of me and how that was different than scholastica. Mainly the other girls around campus. But was also helpful was joining the sorority because there was a lot of girl who knew what they were doing and just showed me around.

Q: Why did you create the Transfer Student Organization?

Abbey: The reason I created TSO was because I wanted a space for transfer students to ask those 'dumb' questions that they were afraid to ask professors. We also created the group to give transfer students a place to feel safe. I know for myself, i was so alone. I could not find anyone that was like myself, but when I meet these new transfer students, it gives me a full heart because I know how they feel because I was in the same boat.

Q: What does the TSO do and why should people join?

Abbey: Like I said earlier, TSO is a place for transfer student and current student to hang out, maybe answer some questions. Mainly what we do at our meetings is just hang out! People should join because 1.) if they are a transfer student struggling to make friends, find where things are, or to meet people who are also transfer students, and 2.) even if people aren't a transfer student, my knowledge base of where things are around campus is about the same as that transfer student coming in, so it is always nice for students who came in as first years to come to our meetings to educate us more! And to also have fun, we love having new people and we always have great conversations! Our talks are usually somewhere along the lines of cats and whos is better, we talked about tasers once, concerts, and how classes are going.

Abbey, on behalf of the Her Campus Crew, thank you for your time and dedication for making St. Kate’s more welcoming.