Brett VanDeWostine

Brett VanDeWostine

Class Year



Erie, Illinois




Secondary Education

Brett VanDeWostine ’24 received the NOYCE Scholarship for his junior and senior years at Carthage. Receiving this scholarship meant a lot to him as he would have never applied to it without the help of his faculty advisor, Professor Karin Sconzert. During one of their classes, Prof. Sconzert told him about the scholarship and application. He followed her advice to apply and received $21,000.

So far, Brett has been most surprised by the connections he’s made at Carthage. He can walk down Campus Drive and knows five to 10 people he passes by. He thinks it’s incredible how connected students, faculty, and staff are.

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“From the first time I stepped on campus, I knew Carthage was where I wanted to be. Students, professors, and faculty at Carthage are super nice and caring about those around them. You are not a number at Carthage; you are someone with a story and goal.”

Brett VanDeWostine, ’24

Favorite class

“My favorite class so far has been Modern Geometry, taught by Professor Aaron Trautwein. I loved the class because there were only ten students in the class, which allowed Prof. Trautwein to connect with each student. Before diving into the material, the first few minutes of every class included life, club, or sports updates from the students and Prof. Trautwein. I was always focused and engaged during the lecture because Prof. Trautwein is an excellent teacher who knows how to keep lectures fun and interesting — not to mention he has amazing board skills, writing and drawing beautifully. Modern Geometry was my favorite class by far, not because of the material, but because of the connections and fun that my classmates and I had during the semester.”

Toughest class

“The toughest class at Carthage so far has been Real Analysis. Real Analysis was the toughest because every action in a problem had to have a theorem definition of the lemma cited as rational. It was not the material that was hard, just the fact that I had to rewire how I explained how I arrived at my answer. While the course was hard, it taught me the importance of being clear and concise when writing mathematical proofs and improved my critical thinking abilities.”

Campus involvement

“I am a member and captain of the men’s golf team. Men’s golf is a growing program I am happy to be a part of. The team has pushed me to new limits on and off the golf course, as all good teams and teammates should. Being on the team has allowed me to create lifelong friends while playing some really cool courses all around the Midwest.

“I am also in the fraternity Delta Upsilon. Delta Upsilon gave me the brotherhood I sought when coming to college. I found a group of guys who loved talking and playing sports and cared about helping the community around them. Delta Upsilon helped me create connections with recent and older alumni who can help me grow both as an undergraduate and future alumni.”

Golden opportunities

“I was part of a J-Term study tour to South Africa in summer 2022. I spent three days at the Nkume Primary School doing school improvement projects. The group of students and professors who went on the trip installed three ceiling fans and internet, and brought 15 laptops and hundreds of dollars worth of supplies for the school. The memories that I have from those three days with the students and teachers at Nkume are something that I will never forget. After our three days at the school, we spent the other 11 days traveling to several different cities. At each city, we had amazing food, went sightseeing, and made memories to last a lifetime. J-Term is a great opportunity for students that cannot be passed up.”

Career goal

“After graduating from Carthage, I plan to become a high school math teacher and a head coach for baseball, basketball, or golf.”

Favorite memory

“My favorite memory was the men’s volleyball team winning back-to-back national championships on our home court in Tarble Arena. This is my favorite memory because the Carthage community showed up in full force as the entire stands were packed shoulder-to-shoulder, and fans wore all white to support the team. The arena shook as the crowd cheered at each point. It is a memory that I will never forget because I sat in the front row for the entire match.”

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

“8-year-old me would never believe my current study and career path. At a young age, I was all about getting into the major leagues for baseball or going to sports management. Now, I have found a love for teaching mathematics and coaching golf, basketball, and baseball. Although 8-year-old me would not believe the change, it is a change that has allowed me to follow my true dreams of impacting the lives of others.”