Pamela Henning was only a junior in high school when she realized she wanted to become a CMU Chippewa. Once she enrolled in CMU's Leadership Camp for high schoolers, she knew she wanted to be part of the community.
"When I got a feel for the community and atmosphere this school offered and the people I could easily connect with, I knew this was a place where I could thrive," said Pam.
She returned for Leadership Camp the next year as well, and when the time came, applied to attend CMU.
Once on campus, Pam immediately immersed herself in all that CMU has to offer, getting involved with several student organizations. She also was eager to help facilitate Leadership Camp and hoped to inspire a new generation of students to fall in love with philanthropy.
"Leadership Camp has made a huge impression on me to inspire social change and that is something I will continue to carry with me. However, I feel a stronger impact from the people I've interacted with through my time with the program. My soul sparks when I am able to share that connection with people who really truly care."
That same reason led Pam to choose a double major in psychology and family studies. She hopes to work as a mental health counselor and said she appreciates the hands-on, real-world experiences she's found at CMU.
"In this field, studying theories is important, but the in- and out-of-classroom practice is what stuck. It's the kind of profession where you need to know your stuff, but you need to know how to do it in real time," said Pam.
Being able to practice in therapeutic classroom settings and apply her education to studies and internships within her program have given her the skills to work with patients face to face.
Above all, said Pam, the people she's had the chance to meet and work alongside have been the most rewarding part of her experience.
"There is so much here to gain besides an education. Every conversation and every person I've had the pleasure to meet was important and eye-opening in more ways that I could imagine."