Amy Mrotek: Returning to a Familiar Place, Seeing in New Light

Amy Mrotek

Class of 2016

At a Glance:

Majors: English (Creative Writing) and Communications (Media Emphasis)

Involvement at SNC: St. Norbert Times, Semester Abroad at Goldsmith’s College in London, Graphos Publication, Honors Program, Writing Center Consultant, Writing and Publication Intern

Current Occupation: AmeriCorps Vista Program Manager and Volunteer Coordinator

Location: Cassandra Voss Center, St. Norbert College

Future Plans: “Live a life of curiosity.” Possible options include: graduate studies, counseling, and teaching English abroad.

Amy Mrotek, eight months post-graduation, has found herself in a familiar location but with an entirely new perspective. Although this will technically be Mrotek’s fifth year on campus, this year she is trading a dorm for an office and exams for volunteer coordination and grant-writing.

Mrotek’s first four years were full of excitement and opportunity, and they succeeded in securing her love for the school. Diving right into her English and Communications majors, she became heavily involved inside and outside of the classroom. Mrotek served as a News and Opinions Writer for the St. Norbert Times, Co-Editor in Chief for the Graphos Publication, and worked as a Consultant in the Writing Center. She also spent a semester abroad at Goldsmith’s University in the bustling city of London, England, and held an internship in writing and publication. The Honors Program, especially the first year in Bergstrom, was also an important part of Mrotek’s college experience. “Living in Bergstrom is so singularly unique,” said Mrotek. The easy friendships and close bonds made throughout the building was so special and so shaping, she explained, and it was definitely an experience she will never forget.

This path and these experiences led Mrotek to her current position - an AmeriCorps worker. Preparing for graduation this past May, Mrotek described herself as the “English major stereotype who didn’t know what they wanted to do.” Thankfully, her professors were looking out for her, and forwarded her the AmeriCorps CVC position as soon as it was released. AmeriCorps, a program offered through the U.S. Government, is essentially a “domestic Peace Corps” opportunity, Mrotek explained. This year-long term of service offers opportunities for program managing, grant writing, and volunteer work. Additionally, it stations the worker in a place that interests them and provides them with a living stipend, with the goal to submerge volunteers in their host site and its work. This brought Mrotek back to the campus that she loves, but this time experiencing it in a whole new light. Her new role allows her to see an entirely different side of the St. Norbert College campus. More specifically, serving in the CVC has provoked many eye-opening discussions, especially with the Year of Masculinity. Aside from interactions with new people, Mrotek is able to learn new things each day and to talk in-depth about ideas and how they affect the world.

Once Mrotek’s term of service is complete next September, she looks forward to continue living authentically. Although she does not have a firm plan at the moment, she is excited about the possibility of many different opportunities. Among these ideas, teaching English abroad and finding a career in counseling are two appealing prospects. Additionally, aside from the incredibly tough market, an MFA in Creative Writing would be an absolute dream for Mrotek. “Uncertainty faces its own challenges,” she explained, “and it’s easy to get down on yourself when you don’t have a plan.” Even so, Mrotek knows that there is no set formula for success, and she is excited to see where life takes her. “Living a life of curiosity is the most important thing I could stamp,” she said. “Be curious.”

We are so excited to see where Mrotek’s future takes her, and we wish her nothing but the best!

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