GSU/50: Students past and present share testimonials about Governors State

Natalie Williams 
Homewood
Prairie State College graduate
Senior at GSU

“I transferred with my associate’s degree from Prairie State. I’m majoring in business administration with a concentration in marketing. I primarily take classes during the day.

The faculty at GSU has been really helpful in challenging me and giving me career advice and helping me with my major and outside programs. They suggest that I think about different internships and certifications. Right now I’m interning with the GSU Marketing & Communications Department. It’s giving me experience in the field that I would really like to work in. I’m excited to have the opportunity to gain skills and experience.

I like the aspect of having a close enough relationship with my professors; I can speak with them after class or even just have discussion in class. I can ask for help from them.

I find the people I’ve met at GSU, like the other students, come from different walks of life and have different experiences from mine, so it’s all just been a great opportunity for me to meet other people.

I recommend GSU!”



Reginald Summerrise
Flossmoor resident, 1995 GSU graduate 
Founder, President & CEO, Le Penseur Youth and Family Service, Inc.


“I had visited a couple of universities and when I went to visit GSU I loved the campus. The administration there was very supportive and talked about other returning adults in the graduate program, and so it was an easy decision and GSU was definitely for me.

When I came to GSU, I was preparing to become an elementary or high school principal. I was working full time at Jane Addams Hull House and part time in Chicago at South Shore High School. I saw something lacking in the Chicago school system in the educational social service area. It was a kind of disconnect between helping students, especially inner-city youth, deal with social problems in a school setting.

I continued on with my school administrator’s degree, but I decided that I was going to start my own licensed child welfare agency.

I had developed such strong relationships with those in my master’s cohort, that within five years when they were principals and superintendents they were calling me for help to  train their staffs on students’ needs. Because of GSU, I was able to walk into meetings with superintendents knowing and speaking the language.”


“I enrolled at GSU in January 2001 because I didn’t know where else to start and it was what I could afford. I had no real drive, passion or direction.  By the time I left in August 2004, I had a bachelor’s in Social Science, an MBA, and an master’s in Political and Justice Studies. I had goals and was starting a business. 



Dave Kush
Director of Academic Assessment
Homewood-Flossmoor High School
Co-owner, Midwest Analytics and Education consulting firm


I believe my transformation happened in large part because of the GSU faculty.  My professors there were extremely brilliant and came from great institutions.  More importantly, they really care about their students, take an interest and invest in them, Anthony Andrews, Frances Kostarelos, and Larry Levinson in particular.  They taught a ton about everything from content, to research, to philosophy, how to write and debate differing perspectives in a civil way.

More importantly, they facilitated the maturation of my personal and professional thinking—to be willing to have high standards for myself, not give up and the key skill of “learning how to learn”...to be willing and able to figure out “how to do something that you don’t know how to do, and nobody else you know does either.”

I remember Dr. Andrews piling on the books in a class on economic history, and my kind of cursing him for all the work.  But then one of those books came up in my job interview to be a teacher at H-F, and I was ready to talk about it.

Dr. Andrews taught me economics, statistics, research—the backbone of data science—nearly a decade before the term was coined. When I interviewed to be assessment coordinator and eventually department chair of assessment at H-F, the questions that were asked all came from the things Dr. Andrews had taught me. 

I wouldn’t be in my position if not for the content and personal development I received at GSU. It’s like my education at Governors was tailor-made for the world I’d encounter. And it was skilled people who really cared about my well-being, who equipped me with the ability to think, communicate, have a vision and goals, persevere and continue to evolve.”

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A great community deserves a great newspaper. The HF Chronicle was created in June 2014 as an online publication. In December 2015 we began monthly print publication, too. Our mission is to chronicle the life of our community — news by, for, and about the people of Homewood and Flossmoor, Illinois.

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