Maggie Johnson: Heading back to the classroom

Maggie Johnson will be the student speaker at the Spring Commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 14, at 10 a.m. She is graduating with a B.A. in Social Work, summa cum laude.

Hometown: Orrville, Ohio

Graduate:Orrville High School

What’s next?

I'm earning a Master of Social Work degree at The University of Akron — I will be in the Advanced-Standing Program, which starts in June.

Q: How are you going to spend your time between graduation and what’s next?

A: I do not have a very long break between graduation and grad school, but I plan to make the most of it! I will be taking a vacation to Chicago with family and I will also be going out to Colorado to hike. In addition to vacation, I also plan on studying for my licensure exam, volunteering, working and preparing for grad school.

Q: Best advice you ever got from a professor

A: The best advice I ever received from a professor was during my junior year. I was sitting in Social Work Practice I and my professor at the time was Lisa Crites. We were talking about ways to be a better social worker for our clients, and she told the class, “Be the kind of person that does what they say they are going to do.” This is such a simple piece of advice, but it has really stuck with me over the years. Whenever I feel like I want to take the easy way out, I think of what she said and I power through. It has helped me become a more ambitious and responsible person.

Q: Did you do an internship or co-op? How did that help you prepare for a career?

A: I was lucky enough to do an internship for both semesters of my senior year at Northwestern Elementary School. While I was there I was able to work with the school social worker along with other professionals to best assist the needs of the children. This experience definitely prepared me for a career in social work because it allowed me to work with an at-risk population. It also gave me hands-on experience working with multidisciplinary teams.