Shannon Black

Class Year



Dubuque, Iowa


Political Science



“I chose Carthage because of its impeccable reputation for developing thinkers, the enormous generosity of scholarship donors, and the amount of support I felt from the college even before arriving,” Shannon Black said. Once she got settled, Shannon quickly got involved in numerous organizations, including InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, swing dance, Pals and Partners, and the Carthage Treble Choir. “Some students pick one thing,” she said. “I’ve tried that and it doesn’t work for me.”

Shannon is a political science major and she hopes to work for an anti-human trafficking ministry before heading to graduate school.

““I chose Carthage because of its impeccable reputation for developing thinkers.”

Shannon Black, ’16

Career goal

“After graduating from Carthage, I hope to work for an anti-human trafficking ministry before going to graduate school.”

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

Professor Paul Ulrich has helped me to improve my analysis of logic in ways that I could not have ever imagined. This skill, which encompasses many, has helped me in probably every discipline of my Carthage career. Additionally, Professor Ulrich is always encouraging of student participation. This helps students such as myself feel comfortable and express ideas outwardly.”

Favorite class

“Being a Christian intellectual on campus, I very much enjoyed Christian Spirituality with Professor John Meech. The class name describes its contents well, and I left the course with more questions than answers – an exciting sign of growth.”

Campus involvement

“Let me precede this by saying that I have a broad span of interests. Good. That being said, at Carthage, I help lead worship and a small group for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, teach swing dance, mentor local elementary school kids with Pals and Partners, sing in the Carthage Treble Choir, and participate in a few other organizations. Some students pick one thing. I’ve tried that, and it doesn’t work for me.”

Toughest class

“My toughest class at Carthage has been Honors Western Heritage II with Professor Paul Kirkland. Delving into literary masterpieces is no easy task.”

Internships or on-campus employment

“During J-Term and Spring Term of sophomore year, I interned at the Kenosha County Courthouse doing work for the Clerk of Circuit Courts. In addition to shadowing various courthouse professionals, my job included compiling a historical court case data base, ranging from the mid-1900s until present day. After completing my internship, it became clear to me that law was not the direction I wanted to go. However, my time with the Clerk of Circuit Courts was invaluable in this way. If I had not interned at the courthouse, I may have pursued law after Carthage only to be disappointed. Now, I take away the job skills I have harnessed and also a more refined understanding of my career aptitude.”

Favorite moments and memories at Carthage

“My favorite memories at Carthage have little to do with the big events here, nor do they relate to any impressive academic achievement. Rather, my favorite times at Carthage have always involved spending time with the wonderful people I have met here and building relationships with them.”

Favorite spot on campus

“My favorite spot on campus is the lower level of the library. I do my best work there, and it’s right next to Einstein’s in case a delicious distraction becomes necessary.”

Biggest surprise so far

“The biggest surprise so far is how much I have changed since freshman year. In the short span of four years at Carthage, I have experienced enormous growth of mind and maturity.”

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

“My 8-year-old self would be somewhat disappointed that I’m not moving in the career direction of skating ballerina/vet. However, my coloring and writing skills have improved immensely, which would be greatly satisfying.”

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

“To those considering political science, my advice would be to reflect on your calling. If you want to participate in the world around you, if you have a deep desire for change and justice, political science may just be the area of study for you.”