Tina Mihm

Class Year

’17

Hometown

Crystal Lake, Illinois

Major(s)

Chemistry

Minor(s)

Education

Career goal

“I would like to become a high school chemistry teacher. I am also looking into using my teaching degree to teach out of the country.”

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

“All my professors at Carthage have been great, but Prof. Duncan and Prof. Eckert would probably be the two who have had the biggest impact.

“Prof. Duncan was my professor for Western Heritage 2, and he allowed us to discuss every subject that was brought up in the class without the fear of having our opinion rejected. This allowed us to approach each subject from every side and then decide for ourselves what we thought of it. This way of running a discussion group allowed me to gain new knowledge of the subjects, whether they were political or religious, and helped me look at it in a new way. I learned a lot from his class that I hope I will apply in my life over the years.

“Prof. Eckert was my professor for Organic Chemistry 1. I had heard a lot of horror stories about Organic Chemistry from other people and was nervous about taking it. From day one Prof. Eckert made the lectures fun and informative. I found that with his way of teaching, I was grasping the different concepts quickly, and was able to apply them to the homework. Prof. Eckert’s love for Organic Chemistry and method of teaching allowed me to enjoy the class, and learn a lot. After taking his class, I have started considering becoming an organic chemist.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class at Carthage so far has been Organic Chemistry 1 (CHM 1020). I really caught onto the different concepts from day one and I loved learning about it. I loved doing the labs and Prof. Eckert made every lecture fun and informative. It was not an easy class, and I had to make sure that I really knew all the concepts. However, I love challenges and this class really challenged me while allowing me to enjoy myself as I learned.”

Campus involvement

Toughest class

“The toughest class that I have had so far has been Physics 1 (PHY 2100). I like math and I find Physics to be ok, but it was a very frustrating class. I would find that in the homework I would think that I had a concept grasped, but when I would take a quiz I would feel lost as to how to apply what I knew. I did fine in the class, but during the whole semester I was constantly frustrated at the homework, the quizzes, the test, etc. The homework alone would take at least an hour and a half, so I had to make sure that I planned it into my schedule. It could be very draining mentally and I often had to force myself to pay attention and not get distracted by everything around me.”

Opportunities at Carthage

“I have done several demonstrations with the Chemistry Club both on campus and at various places off campus.”

Favorite moments and memories at Carthage

“Wandering along the beach in the various seasons, performing chemistry demos for and with kids with the Chemistry Club, meeting friends randomly around campus and stopping to talk and visit for a few minutes.”

Favorite spot on campus

“I have several. there is a small cove in the rocks on the beach that I sit and read or watch the waves in warm weather. I love any spot in the library where I can curl up with a book or homework. I love being in the lab and working on an experiment.”

Biggest surprise so far

“The biggest surprise has been how much I missed my family the first semester, and how much I missed my dorm room during the summer.”

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

“My 8-year-old self would be happy with my choice of study. I have always been interested in science. I have always planned on going into some sort of scientific field. Even as a child I dreamed of becoming a researcher or doctor of some sort. She may be slightly surprised that I chose teaching as my career choice, but she would not be disappointed. I have always loved helping others learn, and I think my 8-year-old self would be proud that I have decided to try to dedicate my life to helping others learn.”

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

“Do not listen to everything everyone says about chemistry. A lot of people do not like Chemistry because it is hard. It is a hard subject to study, but it can be fun too, if you want it to be. Relax and have fun as you learn. (Also, you will hear a LOT of Breaking Bad jokes when someone finds out you are a Chemistry major. Just go with it.)”