Take a moment to get to know Rebecca Neumann, the 2022 Leadership Assistant for Orientation and Transition Programs.
Tell us about yourself. Hi, my name is Rebecca Neumann! I am a senior this year majoring in Psychology and Sociology with a minor in Sign Language Studies and a certificate in Family and Juvenile Support Services. After graduation this May, I plan to continue my education and pursue a graduate degree in Student Affairs in Higher Education.
I am from Troy, Illinois a town about 30 minutes for St. Louis, MO. My family consists of my mom, dad, and three siblings. I also have three nephews that I love having the chance to visit when I can! I moved to Springfield to attend Missouri State in the fall of 2018. I have been living in Springfield for 3 years and this community and MSU feels like home!
Tell us about the organizations you are involved in. Why is getting involved on campus important for students? I have been involved in several organizations on campus over my time at MSU. I am involved in Fraternity and Sorority Life (FSL) since my freshman year as a member in Alpha Omicron Pi, a social sorority here on campus. Within FSL, I am also involved in Fraternity and Sorority Leaders for Social Awareness, Greek Week Committee, and am a part of the Panhellenic Association Executive Board.
Outside of FSL I am involved in the university side of things as a member of the Student Affairs Student Advisory Board, and the Mental Health and Inclusivity Leadership Committee. I am also involved in Student Government Association where I have served as a senator, commissioner, and this year am serving as the Senior Class President for the class of 2022.
I have also been involved with organizations such as Dance Marathon, Mock Trial, and American Association of University Women. Additionally, I have been a Peer Leader, am currently an Undergraduate Learning Assistant and have been a SOAR Leader for two years. I am excited to return as the Leadership Assistant for my third year with the SOAR Program.
Getting involved on campus is one of the best things a student can do! You get to meet so many new people, grow as a leader and have so many incredible experiences. Through my involvement I have experienced personal and professional development and have made memories that will last a lifetime.
Getting involved can help you find your friends and connect you with campus. The connections and support you receive from your involvement are so helpful when you make the change to college.
What do you think makes a good leader? To me, a good leader is someone who is understanding, fair and open to new ideas and feedback!
What have you learned from being a SOAR leader? How do you use these lessons in your everyday life? From my time as a SOAR Leader, I have learned the importance of being adaptable. During my past two years as a SOAR Leader, the SOAR program has faced some changes due to COVID-19. During these changes I have learned how to be flexible and change plans on the spot to make things work.
I learned the importance of being okay with things changing and the value of adaptability. I have used this is my everyday life and in other leadership positions, involvement on campus and in so many other ways. Sometimes things don’t go as planned, and that is okay! I have learned from being a SOAR Leader how to go with the changes, adapt and do it all with a positive attitude.
What do you like best about Missouri State? Why? My favorite thing about Missouri State is the people! I have met so many incredible people here and the connections I have made have been so impactful to my college experience. When I first came to college, I was nervous to navigate a campus of this size but from the moment I went to my SOAR session as a new student I felt welcomed and part of the Missouri State community! I have met to many awesome students that will be my lifelong friends and had the opportunity to work with faculty and staff that have been supportive mentors throughout my college career. I love how welcoming and supportive the people at Missouri State are!
What is your favorite tradition? Why? My favorite tradition is Fountain Day! I love getting to see everyone on campus celebrating the fountain turning back on after being off all winter. It is such a fun way to welcome spring, see your fellow Bears, and participate in giveaways and actives!
What piece of advice do you have for MSU students? My piece of advice for MSU Students is to put yourself out there when you first come to campus. Join an organization, meet the people in your residence hall, or talk to the person next to you in class. It can be intimidating to make the transition into college life, but everyone is in the same boat as you! So many new students are also feeling the same nerves and excitement as you, and everyone is wanting to meet new people.
Take a chance, get involved and say hi to everyone you meet. You never know the connections you will be making and the friendships that will form!
What piece of advice do you have for family members? My advice for family members is to make sure to get your questions answered too! This is a transition for both the family members and the new students and getting all your questions answered is important for you to be able to be that support for your student.
I think it is important to be supportive of your student as they choose their classes, major and other aspect of Missouri State experience. This is such an exciting time because new students are getting to pick things that interest them and can really take control of their educational experience. It is important to have your family member(s) support you in those choices you are making. Trust that your student has the advisors and resources necessary for them to make those decisions and just continue to root for them!