Kaitlyn Rule ’19  |   Published December 15, 2015

Published author, etc.

Hjelmgren making the most of the many opportunities that Monmouth provides
  • Marian Hjelmgren co-authored “The Genius in the Attic,” which was published in “Genius on Television: Essays on Small Screen Depictions of Big Minds.”
Monmouth College’s well-known Honors Program made an impact on English major – and now published author – Marian Hjelmgren that she’ll remember for the rest of her life.
  The skills Hjelmgren, a senior from Northlake, Ill., gained from Honors classes gave her the opportunity to collaborate on an essay with former English faculty member Ashley Carlson. Their essay, “The Genius in the Attic,” was published in “Genius on Television: Essays on Small Screen Depictions of Big Minds.”   Carlson, who served as an editor for the publication, had approached Hjelmgren for help and ended up enlisting her as a co-writer for the essay, which speaks about the way female technologists come across on television crime shows such as “NCIS” and “Criminal Minds.”   “Having that kind of personal relationship with your professors opens up a lot of opportunities for students, so take advantage of it,” advised Hjelmgren.   A four-year program for well-qualified students, the Honors Program reinforces and extends their perspectives of the college’s general education curriculum. It’s designed to help students gain critical thinking skills and knowledge through discussion-based classes.   Hjelmgren, who entered the Honors Program her freshman year, said, “I enjoyed every part of it.” Of the spirited discussions during her Honors courses, she added, “It makes you a lot more understanding. You can have intellectual debates and still come out of class as friends.”   Hjelmgren first became interested in Monmouth College when she found about the small class sizes. During her overnight visit, she met with art professor Stacy Lotz, who eventually convinced her that she would achieve much more at Monmouth than at a large university. She noted that it’s easy to gain a good connection with her professors at a liberal arts college like Monmouth rather than at bigger universities when students “are one of 300 in a class.”   “Every class you take at Monmouth, Honors or not, is meant to help you as a student and person,” said Hjelmgren, a classics minor who has also become involved with a variety of activities outside of class. She joined the Fighting Scots Marching Band and became a drum major, in addition to serving as vice president of Sigma Tau Delta, the international English honors society, and president of Winds Ensemble. A writing tutor, Hjelmgren has served as a copy editor and publicity chair for the Midwest Journal of Undergraduate Research and has participated in Disney Club.   After graduating from Monmouth in May, Hjelmgren has two career goals – to pursue a master’s degree in library studies and become an editor for novels or academic essays.
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