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Amy’s Balancing Act

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Amy Faust: a dual-level senior, earning her Master’s degree in education and her Bachelor’s degree in elementary education; a student supervisor for Nexus; a middle school basketball coach for Calvary Christian Academy; a friend, girlfriend, and roommate. Amy Faust does it all—but how does she balance it all? Amy’s balancing act is difficult but manageable. I was able to sit down with Amy and find out just how she does this thing called “senior year.”

Tell me about what you are studying at Cairn.

A: I am a Dual-Level student, which means I am earning my Bachelors degree in Bible and my Master’s degree in Education, which has a focus on Elementary Education. I will also graduate with a certification in TESOL, and a specialization in Urban Education. I am completing all of this in a 5-year program.

What are you involved in on campus?

A: I am a Nexus supervisor. I am responsible for planning and facilitating Open Houses, prospective visitor days, and all that goes into those things. I am also responsible for reaching out to prospective students and letting them know how great it is to be a student here at Cairn University.

What are you involved with off-campus?

A: Off campus, I am involved in KidZone, which is a local youth group. I am a leader, and hang out with the kids and lead them in music. So each week I have to show up with selected worship songs for the kids to sing and dance to. I am also a middle school basketball coach at Calvary Christian Academy. We have about two or three games a week. I really like coaching the girls; they’re adorable and it’s a lot of fun to invest in their lives and teach them about the game of basketball since I love basketball. But more importantly to teach them how to be a Christian athlete and how to have Christ-like character.

As a senior, what are your goals for this school year?

A: My goal for this school year is to complete my IDP, Instructional Design Project, for my Master’s degree, and to do a really good job on it. My topic for my IDP is the effective classroom management techniques we can use in urban schools. I’m stressed and excited—it’s a lot of work, especially when you’re taking 18 credits and working on and off campus, and it also requires deep thinking. But I’m excited because it’s a topic that applies to what I want to do with my life. It’s applicable content for what I want to accomplish after I graduate. It will give me great insight for when I’m a teacher and have to use classroom management techniques in my classroom.

With all you’re working on and involved with this semester, in what areas have you grown so far?

A: I think a lot of things I’m involved in I find myself as the leader—I’m the supervisor or the head coach. And it’s stretched me in delegating tasks and trusting other people to do them, which is good for me because I often feel like I need to do things in order to do it the way I think it needs to be done. But I’ve been stretched to trust other people to accomplish things. It’s also helped me with the spiritual side of things. When everything is piled on me, since I am in those lead roles, I am reminded that God is ultimately still in control. And it’s okay if I fail, or if I don’t get it all done because God has a plan for it. So I think that’s something God has definitely been teaching me: ultimately He’s in control so I need to just trust Him.

How do you balance your social life with your school life?

A: What social life? Just kidding! My socialization really comes from all the things that I’m involved in; it’s not really separate. At Nexus, for instance,  I work closely with other students who have become my friends, and I’m able to socialize while I work. And at the beginning of the day or at the end of the day, I spend a lot of time with my roommate, so it’s really great to start and end the day with her.

What advice do you have for students who are struggling to balance various obligations?

A: Find a good friend or teacher or somebody you can confide in. Whether you’re really stressed, or excited, or desperately need prayer for something, whatever it may be, find someone you can really talk to. Other than God, they’re going to be your solid foundation for whenever you’re going through something. And this advice is for me too, but even in the midst of struggling with things and feeling overwhelmed, you should find time for God. Things always go smoother when I make Him a priority. And also, it’s okay to have fun. Watch an episode of a show on Netflix, or go out for ice cream, even when you have a lot going on. You only go to college once!

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