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Psychology Student of the Month

Chris Crill

Chris Crill

I was raised in a church homeschool from kindergarten through eighth grade, and unfortunately didn’t receive much of an actual education there. I did however learn to escape into literature. As soon as I was old enough, I spent my free time either bicycling to and from the local library or engrossed in reading. Attending high school, transitioning to the public school system was a shock for me academically and socially. I tested into honors classes, but wasn’t equipped with essential learning skills, and I didn’t do well in working toward additional education. Instead I gravitated towards the arts, and was highly involved in the choir and drama programs. During my senior year my parents moved out of state, and although my “foster” mom was supportive of higher education it never “took”.

It wasn’t until the age of 45 that I finally enrolled in college, here at Normandale. I’m fortunate to have the option of tuition reimbursement through my employer, which pays for roughly ten credits per year. I’m forever grateful to my boss, who encouraged me to take advantage of this opportunity. As an adult learner, I’m interested in the process of “learning how to learn”. And for as long as possible I’d like to continue learning, in order to maintain neuroplasticity and fluid intelligence.

Since I’m looking to turn the means of education into the end, I’m not pursuing any degree or set path of courses at this time. I’m working instead on developing intrinsic motivation, and focusing on the journey rather than the destination. My current path of three psychology classes in a row has been immensely rewarding, engaging, and insightful. I couldn’t recommend a better experience with a better professor: Intro to Psych, Psych of Personality, and Psych of Religion and Spirituality, all online with Andy Tix. The more I learn, the more I’m aware of the privileges and advantages I have, including the time and attention for education. I know that many others aren’t granted similar opportunities, and they may be learning in a second language, working and attending school full time, parenting, etc. With this in mind, my focus for the future is towards finding more and better ways of helping others. In working for a healthcare non-profit company, I’m looking for opportunities for personal growth in order to better support our communities, each other, and ourselves.

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