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As a first-generation college student, Emileigh Stoll wasn’t entirely sure what she could expect when she started school at CMU. What she found was a home.
“Everyone at Central is so friendly, everyone’s always smiling at you when you’re walking around, everyone wants to see you be the best version of you here,” she said. “I just knew when I first set foot on campus that it felt like home, and it’s where I wanted to be.”
Emileigh is an honors student and a recipient of the Centralis scholarship as well. The scholarship has enabled her to broaden her horizons, both literally and figuratively.
“My Centralis scholarship allowed me to study abroad twice now, and as a first-generation college student I don’t think I would have been able to afford those kinds of study abroad options if I hadn’t had the scholarship,” she said.
Emileigh participated in Dr. Joseph Sommers Harry Potter-themed study abroad course and caught the travel bug. The following year, she studied abroad in Prague for a semester.
“The most significant experience I had during the study abroad was that I was able to teach English in a Czech school for four months. That experience has been so transformative in my life, helping me discover a passion for international education.”
That passion has carried over to Emileigh’s post-graduation plans as well.
“Right now I’m applying to different graduate schools for higher education and student affairs, trying to continue the passion that I found here for serving college-aged students. My dream is to be a professor one day and lead faculty study abroad trips. I want to be a resource to students, and be someone that makes a difference in students’ lives during their college experience,” said Emileigh.
For now, Emileigh works as a first-generation honors student ambassador, helping other students like her transition to college life within the honors program.
“We teach them more about what it means to be first-generation, some of the pros and cons that come along with that label and how we can overcome that status to be successful at the university and to just be supportive of each other. I think we have a common bond uniting us and wanting to see each other succeed and excel at Central.”
Emileigh is a campus ambassador who conducts tours for prospective students and parents.
She's studied at CMU’s Beaver Island Biological Station twice.
During the summers, Emileigh works at the writing camp of popular Michigan author Johnathan Rand.