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Psychological Science

Student Voices

Kiran Sehgal ’18


Cedar Grove, Wis.


Psychology and Neuroscience



Favorite spot on campus

“My favorite spot on campus has been the Hedberg Library. I love going to the rooms downstairs to study for exams while drinking a nice hot cup of coffee or tea from Einstein Bagels. The enticing aroma of Einstein’s alone might just be one of my favorite aspects about walking into the library.”

Carthage’s small classes and reputation for pushing students to succeed drew Kiran Sehgal to the College. Now here, Kiran is double majoring in psychology and neuroscience.

Along with her double major, Kiran is very active in student organizations on campus. She is involved in ONE at Carthage, Residence Life, Running Club, and Yoga Club. “I’m grateful I chose Carthage College to launch me toward fulfilling my dreams in life. I am thankful for the beautiful campus that I get to call home for the next few years, the memories I will be able to make, and the goals I will accomplish here.”

Career goal

“I hope to go to graduate school and pursue a master’s degree in a subbranch of psychology in order to become a clinical psychologist. I want to help people in preventative care toward cardiovascular disease and obesity by helping them make dramatic lifestyle changes that will enable them to decrease their chances of developing these health issues.”

Favorite professor

“All of my professors have impacted my life in multiple ways. A few professors that I have thoroughly enjoyed having include Marla Polley for my Western Heritage class, as well as Leslie Cameron and Cornelia Zerban for my Intro. to Psychology class. Throughout Western Heritage, Prof. Polley aided me in thinking critically about how different classical pieces of English literature relate to real-life situations. In my Intro. to Psychology course, Prof. Cameron and Prof. Zerban made the field of psychology exciting for me. They inspired me to think critically about the lifestyles people live and ask questions about human behavior that I didn’t know I wanted answers to. All of these professors clearly showed how much they love their jobs as teachers.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class at Carthage so far has been my Intro. to Psychology class. It was really interesting to learn about all of the different subfields of psychology that are being taught in the Psychology Department at Carthage. It was a unique course and the study sessions that were held by the supplemental instruction leaders helped make the class fun. They were very willing to help students succeed.”

Toughest class

“The funny thing about this question is that my favorite class has also been my toughest class, Intro. to Psychology. As cool as it was to have different professors teaching the lecture, it was difficult to adjust to the teaching styles of each one.”

Opportunities at Carthage

“I have had the opportunity to participate in research experiments for senior theses, volunteer with the campus chapel group at Feed my Starving Children, and join in and listen to eye-opening presentations and speakers through Interfaith Conversations held by Pastor Kara. These opportunities have given me the chance to explore more about who I am as an individual.”

Campus involvement

“I have been involved in ONE at CarthageResidence Life Council, the Running Club, and the Yoga Club. All of the people that I’ve met through these clubs and organizations have allowed me to flourish as a student on campus. I truly feel like I belong as a Carthage student. Since there are so many clubs and organizations, it was hard to decide which ones to join.”

Favorite moments at Carthage

“The Late Night Breakfast served by faculty and staff on the Tuesday night before finals was fun. Other moments I love are just being able to say ‘Hi!’ to my friends as I walk from class to class. I also love meeting up with my organization and club members for activities during the week. This has provided me with memorable moments like holding a candlelight vigil for AIDS Awareness Week in December, and hosting a Family Fun Night in November to play games and make crafts with younger kids in the community.”

Biggest surprise so far?

“One of the biggest surprises has been how friendly people are on campus. There are countless moments that go by in a week where I am taken aback by how polite students are. We hold doors for one another. Senior mentors - those students who were small group leaders during the first week of freshman orientation remember you and ask you how classes have been going. There are so many friendly faces on campus that it’s hard not to catch yourself smiling from class to class.”

What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?

“My 8-year-old-self would think that I’ve changed a lot. I’ve gone from being a shy person to someone who is really outgoing and excited about their degree and career path. She would be proud of the young woman I am becoming because I have changed so much, in a positive manner, and she would be supportive of the dreams I work toward each day.”

Advice for other students considering your major

“I would tell students that they have to be willing to give up their nights to reading from their textbooks and doing a lot of work outside of class in order to succeed. Key traits that a neuroscience and psychology double major must have are diligence, motivation, and natural curiosity for the bigger questions in life.”

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2019), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • The Tower, Carthage’s newest residence hall, provides some of the best views on campus — if not in the Midwest! In addition to #carthageviews of the lake from seven stories up, residents enjoy suite-style living and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about all housing options.

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wings, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • 96% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit Career Services.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. 95% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Winner of four national magic competitions, psychological science professor Tony Barnhart often performs rope tricks, coin tricks, and card tricks in class to demonstrate the psychological principle of inattentional blindness. “You know exactly what’s happening, and you still fall for it every time,” says Alison Mackey ’17.

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • Carthage has been named a top producer of Fulbright Fellows three years running: 2015-2016, 2016-2017, and 2017-2018. Read about Carthage Fulbright winners.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our science center, student union, athletic and recreation center, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 15 years.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from archaeology to neuroscience, nursing to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our more than 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of students receive financial aid. Carthage awards more than $20 million in scholarship and grant assistance. That includes $5.5 million in competitive scholarships in business, mathematics, science, languages, the fine arts, leadership, and overall academic strength. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” recalls biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 35 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from 75% tuition up to full tuition, room, and board. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about the Carthage core.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 120 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Fencing to Frisbee, Chem Club to Stand Up Comedy. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked No. 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …