Math and chemistry major learns outside of the classroom
by Spencer Bailey ’08
May 1, 2007
Claudia Shuba '08
Many college students find the balance between academics and extracurricular activities a difficult one. An exception to the rule, Claudia Shuba '08 has found a way to balance her numerous engagements.
Shuba, from Alexandria, Va., came to Dickinson to “be a part of a close-knit community,” she says. But Shuba found that she is more than just a part of this community and that her experience here goes well-beyond Dickinson's campus.
Service learning, for Shuba, is the key to community engagement. “I am interested in exploring community service and philanthropy locally, nationally and internationally,” she says, “and Dickinson has given me the opportunity to achieve all of these things.”
A math and chemistry double major, Shuba is involved with the campus' Habitat for Humanity affiliate, has played on the varsity field hockey team and is vice president of philanthropy for the Pi Beta Phi sorority.
As part of her sorority work, Shuba has spearheaded a Children's Miracle Network carnival and has helped organize other fundraisers, such as the Haunted Hayride, which raises money for the YMCA, and Bowling for Books, which raises money to buy books for Carlisle area public schools. She also reads to children for two hours every Sunday at the Bosler Free Library.
“You don't have to be [involved in Greek life] to be involved with service on campus,” Shuba says.
Other service opportunities she's been involved with include several local building projects with Habitat for Humanity as well as being in charge of a food drive with Project SHARE.
Shuba has participated in opportunities off-campus as well. Through Dickinson , Shuba traveled to Pascagoula, Miss., in Jan. 2006 to help with hurricane relief efforts.
“I had the opportunity to meet other Dickinsonians, and it also opened my eyes to a world beyond the college itself,” she says.
Shuba later spent two months in New Orleans, La., during the summer of 2006, working with the Mardi Gras Service Corps Family Match Program. She helped with demolition, rebuilding, painting and aiding families moving back into their homes following the hurricane.
In Jan. 2007, Shuba returned to New Orleans for another service trip with other Dickinson students.
For the 2007 spring semester, Shuba studied in Sydney, Australia . And while she went there primarily to focus on chemistry work, she pursued service opportunities as well.
“I will take these service experiences at Dickinson, both local and abroad, with me for the rest of my life,” Shuba says. “They have prepared me for the future.”
Shuba has received recognition for her work, including the Sophomore Leadership Award, the national Pi Beta Phi Excellence in Literary Programming and Development Award, several Pi Beta Phi regional awards and two varsity letters on the field hockey team.
After graduation, she wants to join the Peace Corps or Teach for America , and she wants to be a teacher eventually.
“I want to teach both math and chemistry to high-school students. And I want to work for the Red Cross. My options are open right now … so I'll figure the details out in a couple of years.”