Emma Lynam ’21 will be joining the AmeriCorps City Year program in Philadelphia. City Year AmeriCorps members serve in schools, preparing students to succeed in school and in life.
Could you talk a little bit about the program that you’re going into?
I’ll be doing a year of service. My day-to-day is going to vary, but I’m basically going to be in a classroom supporting a partner teacher, working with students in small groups and one-on-one. I’m doing a lot of pull-outs in that way, and then supporting [the students] academically as well as socially and emotionally.
Hometown: Ambler, Pa.
High school: Germantown Friends School
How did you find out about City Year?
I love working with kids. And I wanted to go into education and be a teacher, but I wasn’t ready. I have a friend from high school, who is a year above me, and she’s actually doing City Year this year. I talked to her about it, it sounded like a really cool program, and I applied.
Is there anything in particular that attracted you to the education field?
It sounds kind of selfish, but it always has brought me such joy, spending time with kids. I started babysitting when I was around 12, and I have always been a camp counselor in the summers. And I did some tutoring in high school. My sophomore spring here at Hamilton, I did the New York City program, and when I was there, I had an internship in a second-grade classroom. I was essentially a third teacher in the classroom for that semester, and I loved it.
Have any other classes or professors helped to foster your interest in education?
I’m an education studies minor. It’s different because the education program is not, like, how to be a teacher. It’s how to study education. But it’s still interesting … Professor Chambliss in the Sociology Department has been my advisor for the past four years. I got really lucky. I had him for intro [sociology], and that’s what awakened my love for sociology — definitely the first class where I was really excited to learn the material and really excited to go to class every day.
The education program here is … very, very small. I’ve had the same professor for every single education class I’ve had at Hamilton, actually, Professor Wang. And she’s so wonderful, and is the person who made it possible for me to be an education minor.
What do you plan to do after your City Year?
At this point, I see myself being an elementary school teacher, but that could definitely change.
What will you miss the most about Hamilton?
Definitely the people and the friends that I have here who really mean a lot to me. I’m really going to miss them, seeing them every day. But also, I’m someone who is very grounded in my routines and my feeling very comfortable in a place. So I’ll miss the campus and my routines here and feeling at home, because I’ve been here for a long time now.