Abraham Lincoln statue on Carthage College?s campus.
Shawn Runningen ?25

Shawn Runningen

Class Year



Franklin, WI


Music Education

Shawn Runningen ’25, a music education major, has been involved in music his whole life. He has participated in many ensembles, musicals, and musical performances. In high school, he was a member of an a capella group that made it to the final round of the International Championship of High School A Cappella. 

On campus, he is a member and librarian of the Carthage Choir and Carthage Chorale, and the president of Lambda Kappa, a co-ed music fraternity. “I organize music for the chorale and ensure everyone has the music they need.”

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“Carthage has the whole package. The beautiful lake view, small class sizes, and experienced faculty who are always willing to help if you are struggling.”

Shawn Runningen, ’25

Faculty mentors

Professor Maggie Burk, in particular, has been a massive inspiration for me to keep pursuing a major that is challenging to me but that I am extremely passionate about. She has shown me what kind of educator I want to become. The Music Department faculty at Carthage work to help me succeed whenever I reach out.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class has been Choral Conducting. Though it is tough for me, I can see all the progress I have made with the help of Prof. Burk.”

Toughest class

“My toughest class is Band and Orchestra Pedagogy for Vocalists. I am not the most experienced with different instruments. Learning to play many instruments quickly is very challenging for me.”

Career goal

“I want to teach middle or high school choir!”

Favorite spot on campus

“When the weather is nice, I love sitting on the benches by the lake while listening to music.”

Best tip for making friends

“Getting involved in different activities is a fantastic way to make friends!”

Biggest surprise

“The biggest surprise is how much I’ve grown in life skills since my freshman year in college.”

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

“My 8-year-old self would be so proud that I still want to be a teacher.”