“Challenging, engaging, and critical,” are the three words that new graduate Owen Vadala (’22) used to describe his last 10 months at TC. The College’s dedication to education, social justice, and equity aligned with Owen’s goals. “I wanted to engage in a curriculum focused on the student debt crisis and equitable access to higher education for those with criminal records,” he said. 

“Come to TC with a plan. Know what you want to get out of the degree and the institution—and stick to it. Don’t give up! — Owen Vadala (MA ’22 Higher and Postsecondary Education)

Owen emphasized the impact of one class in particular: The American College Student, taught by Professor Kevin Dougherty. “The content knowledge I’ve gained will help me further my future professional and academic endeavors,” he stated. “At TC, we constantly question why a particular aspect of the subject matter we study is taught or performed that way.”

In addition to his studies, Owen did a work-study in TC’s Admission office, was a graduate associate at Columbia’s School of Engineering Professional Development and Leadership office, and worked on a research project with a professor in California. “I came to TC with specific goals I wanted to accomplish within 10 months,” Owen says. “And I am happy to say that I accomplished everything I wanted to. TC has the resources, support systems, and professors that allowed me to achieve my goals in a limited time frame.”

Owen plans to continue his studies and ultimately wants to pursue a doctorate in education.

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