Editor-In-Chief Shannon Wells: The People I Love at UC Clermont


Shannon Wells 

October 19th, 2022

For our first two installments reflecting on what we love about UC Clermont, we focused on our favorite places and intangible aspects of campus (check them out here Editor-in-Chief Shannon Wells: The Places I Love at UC Clermont (thelantern.media) and here What I Love About UC Clermont: The Intangibles by Editor-In-Chief Shannon Wells (thelantern.media)). Through these offerings, our own Editor-in Chief, Shannon Wells, detailed what pulls at her heartstrings the most. For our last 50th Anniversary editorial, Shannon shares her insight on, perhaps, the best part of UCC… the people.

Editor-In-Chief Shannon Wells: The People I Love at UC Clermont

In the spirit of UC Clermont’s 50th Anniversary, I reflected on the friendly people I have met during my time as a Cougar. The people I love at UC Clermont include students, faculty, and staff, alike. I have various notable memories of the many kind-hearted souls and faces on campus. When I think of the people I love the most, a few names come to mind. These include Rachel Hoermann, Amanda Robinson, Dr. Stephanie Alcantar, Dr. Anuradha R. Chatterjee, and Nikki Vargas. In addition to providing my favorite memories of them, I asked them to reflect on what they love about UC Clermont, as well. Here are their responses:


Sophomore Rachel Hoermann

Rachel Hoermann: Sophomore English Major and Managing Editor of the East Fork Journal

Since I first started at the East Fork Journal, Hoermann has been a compassionate and generous influence. I remember I was excited when I discovered she was becoming the Managing Editor of our publication. She has taken on the role considerably well, and I am happy and thankful to continue to work with her and gain useful experience.

What do you love about the student body in general?

Hoermann: I like that the student body is a diverse group of students. I like that we all come from different places, we’re all different ages, and we all have different experiences. Also, everyone seems very open to each other and accepting of each other, and not only that but supportive of each other. I think that especially being an older student, that feeling of being so welcome is a great comfort.

What do you love about your role in a student organization?

Hoermann: I love being the Managing Editor of the East Fork Journal because I get to work with new editors and help them realize their passion for the arts. I also enjoy teaching them to use their strengths and broaden their horizons to find new ways to utilize them. 

Sophomore Amanda Robinson

Amanda Robinson: Sophomore Pre-Pharmacy Major and Member of the American Sign Language Club (ASL)

I admire Amanda because of her determination and dedication to her classes, as well as ASL club. She is so impressive. As a fellow ASL club member, I am always pleased to receive her input. She also never fails to brighten my day with her enthusiasm. Amanda is a very diligent worker. I couldn’t be happier that she joined the club and has shared her interesting and fun ideas. It certainly does not go unnoticed. I view her as a role model for incoming students and I feel lucky that I got the chance to meet and befriend her in our 2089 Intermediate Composition class.

What do you love about your favorite professors?

Robinson: I would have to say I have two favorite professors. First, Dr. Karen Mathis was my Anatomy and Physiology teacher, plus my Biology teacher. She is very easygoing, very understanding, and always willing to go out of her way to help students with anything. She encourages the students and is very understanding of life situations. She also has a way of bringing comedy into the classroom and is, all around, an awesome professor. Then there is Professor Kimberly Clifford. She is my ASL teacher, plus the leader of the ASL club. She is also very understanding and always willing to help out students. She was one of my bigger supporters when I was going through some health issues. She was very encouraging to get me to go to the doctor to make sure that everything is going okay. Professor Clifford was also very understanding when those health issues were making me fall asleep in class and was always willing to repeat anything that I missed if I did fall asleep. So, I would have to say those are my two favorite professors.

What do you love about the student body in general?

Robinson: My favorite thing about UC Clermont students is that we always seem to come together. We’re always there to support each other and always willing to give a helping hand. Also, I’ve noticed that if there is a student that is struggling with learning something or struggling with trying to get help to learn something, we also have a group of students who have the information to help students to be able to go find the help that they need, or able to help them answer the questions that they need to be answered.  


Dr. Stephanie Alcantar

Dr. Stephanie Alcantar: Editor – East Fork Journal, Assistant Professor of Spanish – English, Language and Fine Arts

Dr. Alcantar has been tremendously helpful as an editor at the East Fork Journal. As an editor at the East Fork Journal myself, I am thankful for having the opportunity to meet and learn from her. She is a fantastic contributor, as well as a kind and exceptionally inspiring mentor. Dr. Alcantar is deeply valued by her students and the East Fork Journal has benefited greatly from her insight and guidance. 

What do you love about the student body in general?

Alcantar: While I have been at UC Clermont for only one year now, I have had the opportunity to meet exceptional UC Clermont students. I love that UC Clermont has committed and very hardworking students. I have noticed that many of them have to overcome challenges in order to finish their degree, and the hard work and extra time they put in to be successful is admirable. It is truly rewarding to be part of the process of creating bridges between their dreams and their success.

What do you love about your job?

Alcantar: As a mentor and a teacher, I love when my students see improvement and grow in confidence. It is truly fulfilling for me to be able to share my culture and help them discover the value of learning a new language. I enjoy motivating my students to be inclusive and be persuaded by the results of experiencing the world from a multicultural perspective.

Dr. Anu Chatterjee

Dr. Anuradha R. Chatterjee: Associate Professor of Humanities and Social Sciences

Dr. Chatterjee is a wonderful professor and I loved taking her World Literature II class during the Fall semester of 2021. She went above and beyond when helping my writing blossom and allowing my creativity and passion for writing to shine. Dr. Chatterjee is an outstanding mentor, and because of her, I feel more confident in my writing. The chance to expand my insights and gain knowledge from her wisdom was truly enlightening. I am pleased to carry what she has taught me for the duration of my college life and onward. 

What do you love about the student body in general?

Chatterjee: What I like about the student body here is, in my experience of growing up, I never encountered students who are first-generation college students and this kind of open-access environment. So, it took me a while to understand what that really means and it also made me appreciate how many odds our students are up against. I also learned to appreciate their drive in trying to earn a degree and make a better life for themselves. I realize, with most of my students, it is their resolve. It’s not so much what is expected by their parents or their family. It is something they decide to do. So, I find it really is a challenge to see that. Also, I find it very inspiring that our students undertake this challenge against all these odds.

What do you love about your job?

Chatterjee: In a lot of my courses, I get to share several of the authors that I love with my students. It is related to my first answer – to see the drive the students have. Most of our students work and they pave their way through college. So, to see them strive and meet this challenge and also to see how some of the texts that we read might change their thinking, especially the texts from world literature and ethnic literature, and to see them grow and expand their minds because of their exposure to these texts is a very rewarding experience. 


Associate Director of Marketing and Communications, Nikki Varas (top middle), with students behind the welcome desk of the Student Services Center

Nikki Vargas: Associate Director of Marketing and Communications

Mrs. Vargas is remarkable at her job. She was a wealth of knowledge when I used to be a Student Ambassador at UC Clermont. She was truly supportive and encouraged students to work as a team, learn new skills, emerge from their comfort zones, and never be afraid to ask for help. I will always remember working with her my freshman year, and I am grateful to have had the opportunity. In truth, because of Mrs. Vargas, I am where I am today. 

What do you love about the student body in general?

Vargas: What I enjoy most about the student body is getting to work with the students, finding out about their different majors, what their interests are, and where those interests lie. I work with student workers at our student welcome desk and at our student ambassador program. So, what we try to do is, if they are working on particular skill sets, or programs that they are in, we try to pair that up with things that we do in the marketing department, at the welcome desk, and within our ambassador program. So, I just love working one on one with students, getting to know them, their interests, and what they are looking to achieve in their future. 

What do you love about your job?

 Vargas: My favorite part is the variety. Within my job, I am an associate director for the marketing department – so, for marketing and community arts. I am lucky because I get to do a lot of different things on campus. I get to work with students, both at the welcome desk and I get to train them. I also love that I get to work with students in the student ambassador program. We get to train them to do tours. It is very rewarding for me to work with those students – again learn about them – and help them achieve their goals. Also, I get to dabble in the arts. I run the art gallery on campus, as well as our Calico Children’s Theatre series for families with young children from pre-k to the fifth grade. I enjoy the arts because I have an arts background and I love the creative process. I love creativity in general and I love the variety that we get of different artworks in the gallery, as well as seeing those families come to campus to catch a live performance in our theatre. It’s a lot of fun for me. Some of these children who come to the theatre may one day be our students on campus. So, I think it’s a great way to introduce them to the campus at an early age. 

Full moon over McDonough Hall

Following my exploration of the people I love at UC Clermont, one major takeaway is that the 50th anniversary definitely reflects the growth of our campus community. Here, we have the opportunity to form bonds, learn from each other, and strengthen one another in the present! 


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