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STUDENT PROFILE

Anna Szczekutowicz

Anna Szczekutowicz
Major:
Mathematics
Graduation Year:
Spring 2019
"Work hard, no matter how behind you feel compared to others. School is what you make of it so make it the best it can be!"

What has been the most rewarding part about working at the Sanger Center?
The most rewarding part about working at the Sanger Learning Center is the hands on experience with the students and witnessing all Sanger’s dedicated members go above and beyond to help students. Being surrounded by dedicated educators and workers that want to help students as much as possible has been very contagious.

What has been the most surprising aspect of your job?
The most surprising aspect of my job is how a short period of time can really make a difference for a student. I’ve had the privilege of witnessing students enter the classroom with a closed mindset for mathematics and after a few weeks or the semester, they start to really understand the concepts and enjoy learning math. It is amazing that just a few weeks can really make an impact on their education.

Tell us about a time you worked with a student (or group of students) and were particularly proud of the outcome. What happened? Why was it special?
I had a student come to me after the first exam and he was really worried about failing the course. After a long conversation about how to change his study habits, he decided to come to my office hours on a weekly basis. He would work on the homework beforehand and come to discuss any problems he did not understand. By the end of the semester, he had achieved a B+ grade! It was special to see a student overhaul his study habits and make a change that positively affected his grade.

What do you think is the biggest myth about learning/studying in college?
I think the biggest myth about learning/studying in college is that if you’re bad at a subject, you cannot change that. Some subjects may come easier to some students, but with the proper studying habits and hard work, students can get better at subjects they dislike – even the most common hated subject, math!

Tell us about an academic challenge you encountered when you got to UT. How did you handle it? What advice would you give to someone in that same situation?
When I got to UT, I felt like I was not as prepared for the math graduate program as my peers. It seemed like everyone around me had taken graduate courses before and had become experts in the material already. I was intimated at first but I worked hard to catch up. I spent a lot of time trying to understand the concepts and it eventually led me to find my adviser and current research area. I would tell someone in the same situation to work hard, no matter how behind you feel compared to others. School is what you make of it so make it the best it can be!