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This Spotlight series recognizes a UW-Fox Valley student’s academic achievements and personal story. Students are nominated for this spotlight by faculty and staff.

Name: Melayna GreinerMelayna S

Age: 21

Hometown: Appleton, WI

Career Program/Major: Education, emphasis Science

What is your career or life goal?

I plan on getting my bachelor’s degree and becoming an educator. I would like to do that for a while and then eventually get my master’s degree. Right now, my plan is to have my science emphasis be astronomy. When I go back for the master’s degree, I will focus on astronomy and hopefully work for NASA some day! My side goals are to publish a piece of my writing, publish an original composition of music, be in a community band, master cooking, raise my son in a safe and loving atmosphere, travel as much as possible with my son and husband, focus on positivity and spirituality, put my past behind me, and reach self-actualization!

What led you to choose your program or major?

Music is my passion and I was actually majoring in it when I first started college. I decided that I didn’t want to turn my passion into my career, but always keep it as my hobby or my escape. I have always wanted to teach, too, and I absolutely love science so I chose that instead.

Why did you decide to become a University of Wisconsin student at UWFox?

I am extremely grateful for UWFox. It is close to where I live, and most of all, it is inexpensive! Without it, I most likely would not have even attempted college. I also love that it’s part of the University of Wisconsin System so that I am able to transfer fairly easily to other UW colleges.

Is there a UWFox professor or staff member who made a difference in your life or inspired you?

Dr. Bethany Reilly was the one who got me hooked on astronomy. She is fun and kind and I love her passion for science. She definitely inspired me. In addition, Professor Kathy Immel has been an awesome and inspiring teacher. She teaches one of my favorite subjects, psychology. Through her, I was able to participate in a research study that was trying out a kindness and mindfulness curriculum for preschoolers. I was very grateful for that opportunity and learned a lot about hands-on research and, best of all, I got to work with kids. I would also like to mention Dr. Marc Sackman, who made me a much better flute player by pushing me and believing in me.

What is one piece of advice you would give to an incoming UWFox student?

Focus on school. Of course, work and friends/family are important, but doing well in the two years at UWFox can help you get scholarships for transferring and this is the perfect place to learn good study habits. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Get friendly with your professors, they are there to help you and encourage you! Chat with them after class, send them emails, do what it takes to help yourself and your grade.

When not in class or studying, what keeps you busy?

I don’t have a paid job right now, but I am a full time mom. When I’m not doing school things, I am hanging with my son (who just turned one!). We go on walks a lot, either outside or in the mall. My husband and I love film so we keep up on movies we like. We also love to cook and try new things as much as possible. Usually during the summer, I read and write. I love intense scary books and I like to write all sorts of things including screenplays, poetry, short stories, music, and journals. I also love being outside in nice weather.

What are your plans after UWFox?

I plan on transferring to UW Oshkosh and completing my bachelor’s degree there. I would like to teach somewhere in the Appleton area for now while my husband and I save as much money as possible. I’m taking life day by day and enjoying every moment so that when I look back on this time in my life, I will be comforted by its memory and live without regret.

To learn more about the associate degree and options for beginning one of more than 200 majors at UW-Fox Valley, call (920) 832-2620 to schedule an appointment with an advisor.


Laurie Krasin