Amber is inspired to pursue a career as an English professor

Amber Steiger

When Amber Steiger, of Woodstock, enrolled at MCC in 2015, she had no idea she would find her life’s passion and delve into graduate-level research in her second year at MCC. She took a Composition I class in Fall 2015, taught by Kate Midday, and discovered her writing talent. Midday said she was impressed by Amber’s work.

"In my Comp I class, she was brilliant,” Midday said. “I invited her to join MCC’s Honors program and she excelled. I’m thrilled when students are drawn to our fields of expertise and we can be there to encourage them. Sometimes all it takes is one person to say – ‘Hey! You are smart! You’re great at this!’ I wish that for all of our students at MCC.”

Amber continued to take more English classes, including Comp II, Women’s Literature, and Children’s Literature and this semester, the faculty and student duo started to work on a research project together on Multicultural Feminisms. The project is part of MCC’s Undergraduate Research Scholar Program (URSP), where students explore a topic of interest and work one-on-one with an instructor as an independent study, created by the student’s area of interest.

Midday said most literature taught on campuses—even in women’s literature—are written by educated,straight, white women. This research focuses on marginalized women’s writing, history and theory, as well as non-fiction works. One book the two are reading, “The Sacred Hoop,” is about Native American women’s lost customs and cultures, and frames the work of Native American writer Loiuse Erdrich. One question they hope to answer through their research is “How are the voices of marginalized women represented in contemporary literature and how does the feminist framework need to be altered to allow for the inclusion of those voices?”

Through her interaction with Midday, Amber is inspired to pursue a career as an English professor. “I love English and I wanted to pursue it in some way. I want to learn as much as I can and seek opportunities to allow me to influence another person someday, just like Kate did for me. Kate Midday is a big part in shaping what I’ve become interested in and I admire how she connects with people,” Amber said. Amber plans to graduate in 2018 with her Associate in Arts degree and then transfer to a four-year university.

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