Abby Trch ?23

Abby Trch

Class Year

’23

Hometown

Algonquin, Illinois

Major(s)

Political Science

Minor(s)

Women’s and Gender Studies, Social Justice

“I traveled to Peru as part of a J-Term study tour. I can’t even begin to describe how meaningful and life-changing this experience was. I could never get the same kind of experience inside a classroom. I visited Machu Picchu, met indigenous communities, and observed how tourism affected women, the environment, and more.”

Abby Trch, ’23

Career goal

“Honestly, I’m still not entirely sure. However, I’ve been working with The Aspire Center and my advisors to figure out my options. I’m looking into attending law school or graduate school. No matter where I end up, I hope to use my degree to bring about change for marginalized communities.”

How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?

“Carthage faculty have had an invaluable impact on my college career. These are the types of relationships you could never find at larger universities. The personal relationships you form with the faculty help you succeed and learn to fail better. Their support reminds you that you have someone in your corner at all times.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class at Carthage so far is either Global Poverty with Professor Ellen Hauser or Introduction to Women’s and Gender Studies with Professor Maribel Morales Martinez. Both classes exposed me to perspectives and information that I otherwise wouldn’t have encountered. The professors also created a great learning environment. They prioritized learning over memorization and encouraged a dialogue about uncomfortable topics.”

Campus involvement

“I am involved in Model United Nations. As a member of this organization, I have attended a conference in Chicago and will attend another in Barcelona, Spain. These learning experiences have been one of the things I will always treasure about my experience at Carthage.”

Toughest class

“My most challenging class was Constitutional Law: Civil Rights and Civil Liberties with Professor Thomas Powers. He challenges you to think as if you were a lawyer. This class was my first experience with law at a college level. It required quite a bit of time and effort, but it was rather rewarding.”

Internships or on-campus employment

“I work at the Brainard Writing Center on campus. Although it is not directly related to political science, writing is necessary for all fields. Our mission is to help others polish their writing skills through collaboration. We can support you in any stage of the writing process and any discipline. Check us out in the Hedberg Library!”

Opportunities at Carthage

“This January, I traveled to Peru as part of a J-Term study tour. I can’t even begin to describe how meaningful and life-changing this experience was. I could never get the same kind of experience inside a classroom. I visited Machu Picchu, met indigenous communities, and observed how tourism affected women, the environment, and more.”

Scholarships

“I received the Carthage Academic Honors Financial Aid Award, which made college affordable. With the money I saved because of the scholarship, law school or graduate school are options for me.”

Favorite moments and memories at Carthage

“Some of my favorite Carthage memories are the events that the Carthage Activities Board puts on. For instance, I enjoy going to Bingo or doing a craft with my friends.”

Favorite spot on campus

“My favorite spot on campus is, hands down, Starbucks. Not only do I love getting my caffeine fix, but I also love seeing friends or studying there.”

Biggest surprise so far

“One of the biggest surprises so far was that I could graduate in three years instead of four. My majors and minors are all intertwined, and I came to Carthage with college credit from high school. All these circumstances are allowing me to graduate early and start my career sooner.”

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

“I think 8-year-old me would be proud of my current career path. Growing up Chinese in a majority-white community was challenging at times. It was hard not seeing people who looked like me in leadership positions or on TV. It was difficult going to school and not learning about contributions that the Asian community has made to United States history. My current career path aims to show other Chinese American kids that the possibilities are endless for their future endeavors.”

Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?

“Other students should consider being a political science major because it is one of the most flexible majors. Everything is political, so you can use your degree in countless fields. At the same time, this means that everything you learn applies to the real world and is extremely relevant. If you choose to become a political science major, I recommend taking classes with a variety of professors in the department. Although you’ll undoubtedly find a favorite professor, it’s good to learn from various professors for several reasons. One of them being is that more professors will know you personally. This is an excellent way to network and be exposed to different perspectives within the field.”

Why Carthage?

“I chose Carthage for a handful of reasons, but what sold me was the J-Term trips. Studying abroad was one of the most important experiences I wanted to get out of college. I loved the J-Term trips because they don’t require the same amount of commitment that studying abroad for a semester does.”