Hometown: Becker, MN
Major: Behavioral Science with a concentration in Psychology
Like many students, Michelle was attracted by UMM's size and location. "I had applied to a few other schools but nothing sounded better than to learn hands-on along the coast of Maine. UMM drew me in because of the small class sizes, the learn-by-doing nature of the programs and the overall friendly environment that I now call home.
"I actually started as a Marine Biology major, but I have always had an interest in psychology. I started with a few psychology classes and found it to be exactly what I was looking for, so I changed my major.
"One of the best things about the Behavioral Science program at UMM is that we don't just learn out of a book and in lectures. The program is great at working in community projects that relate directly to what we’re learning. This past summer I worked as a developmental therapist-in-training at the Washington County Children's Program. I learned how I should act and what I may experience on the job. I worked with children with a variety of developmental disorders and it was a wonderful learning experience.
"Between biology and psychology, I've been able to take a range of classes that both challenge and interest me in both fields and I know that they will serve me well as I continue my education. I can honestly say that only at UMM have I been able to dissect a seal, work with children with a wide range of developmental disabilities and do so many other things in between, including acting in campus theater productions and exploring the beach in my free time."
Hometown: Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
"The first semester of my first year I was exposed to field work. I learned basic water-quality testing methods, including measuring pH, dissolved oxygen, and temperature; and benthic macro invertebrate sampling. I got to see how biologists sample wild fish populations. I also gained fish and aquatic invertebrate identification skills. This early introduction to field work cemented my interests in biology and taught me many of the skills field biologists should have."
Professor Sherrie Sprangers notes that the combination of an unspoiled coastal location and a faculty committed to hands-on learning is a perfect fit for UMaine-Machias students.
"Evan's field work is a good example of how our programs encourage increasingly sophisticated levels of research. He started studying salmon from a basic ecological viewpoint his first semester here; three years later he’s doing molecular biology, isolating and sequencing salmon genes. I can't think of another undergraduate institution where that’s even possible."
Evan's field work and strong academics led to a position with the Atlantic Salmon Commission the summer of his sophomore year, and with the Fisheries and Oceans Canada Sea Lamprey Control Unit the summer of his junior year. Evan is currently enrolled in a master's program at the University of Guelph in Ontario, where he's working on a brook trout project linking specific genes with rates of development.
Hometown: Middletown, RI
Major: Interdisciplinary Fine Arts
"In all honesty, I was pretty reluctant about going to college. I didn't enjoy high school very much, and I wasn't really sure that there was actually a college out there where I could explore everything that genuinely interested me.
"I've loved writing as long as I have been able to write, and even as a child I thought about making my own book. I like being able to design and create things; with book arts the final product has to be completely designed: the materials, the layout, the cover, and even each individual page. To write a story and create the book to put the story in intrigues me."
What hooked Jordan on the Book Arts program was seeing the studio, the presses, and the gallery filled with students' work. "All I could think was, 'I want to make something like that!' As cliché as this might sound, I had found something that fit with my interests. I knew that I'd be coming to UMM in the fall; no other school I'd seen could compete."
Hometown: Limestone, ME
Major: Interdisciplinary Fine Arts
"I knew the moment I read the description of the Interdisciplinary Fine Arts Program that UMaine-Machias was the school for me. I was having a hard time deciding between the other state schools and an art school. I wanted a place that would allow me the freedom to study both creative writing and the fine arts.
"The great thing about this school is that passion seems to be in the water. The things I'm passionate about are random acts of art. I can gather my art supplies at any time and head to the art studio, and just create. Every IFA professor is very understanding about this need, whether it's related to writing, drawing, or jam sessions. The professors here are all so amazing. I never thought that I'd be able to run up to a professor and hug him. These are the bonds you make at UMM."