As a Brock student, Scarlet Stark has never allowed an opportunity for personal development and growth to pass her by, as she has taken full advantage of everything that Brock has to offer.
Stark’s initial post secondary experience can be best described as a period of indecision. Like so many students graduating high school, Stark wasn’t exactly sure she knew in which direction to take her university career. She ultimately decided to attend a one-year General Arts program at Niagara College, which allowed her to select whichever courses she wanted.
“I liked my psychology classes and when I spoke to my professor there, he highly recommended Brock if I wanted to pursue my interest in the subject,” said Stark.
As a local, Stark enjoyed several school field trips, summer camp programs, dance recitals and the usage of the Brock pool in her childhood and cites these fond memories as a strong factor that influenced her decision to attend Brock’s Psychology program.
She is currently working with Professor Angela Book in the Department of Psychology, conducting research in the field of forensic psychology. Their work includes investigating and developing new interrogation methods and Stark hopes their efforts will increase police interrogation accuracy through strategies that can be easily implemented in diverse communities.
“The entire experience was pretty cool because I didn’t initially think of the bigger impact my work would have. It’s amazing how psychological research can impact people’s daily lives in such fundamental ways,” said Stark.
Stark is also an extremely active volunteer in the Brock community. It is Stark’s volunteer work through career services that she is most proud of, specifically her work in Mentorship Plus. In the program, first years are matched with upper-year students with the goal of helping ease the transition to university for first years. Stark is a firm believer in the developmental opportunities provided by engaging in volunteer experiences.
“It’s important because I feel like university is a lot more than going to class and handing in assignments. We’re fortunate Brock allows students to become part of the process in helping the university function on a day to day basis. You gain skills and work with people outside of your program. It gives you experience and it’s undervalued. Volunteering helps you figure out what you enjoy doing and don’t enjoy doing without the commitment of employment. When you leave university you leave with more than a BA,” said Stark.
In fact, Stark encourages all students to get involved and advises interested students who are seeking new and exciting opportunities but don’t know where to look to investigate Experience BU and Experience Plus, which she considers two great resources to get started.
Additionally, Stark also works as the Senior Career Assistant at Career Services. The highlight of the job for Stark is being able to help other students and make a positive impact in their lives.
“I would like to continue working in the university. I really want to help students. I’d love to be an academic advisor which would combine my experience with career services and my interest in psychology. Above all I’d really enjoy being a resource for students in the future,” said Stark.
Stark also understands what it’s like to not know what you want to do with your career and be stuck with a feeling of lacking direction. For students who can empathize with these emotions, Stark encourages them to visit career services.
“Drop into Career Services and get a degree exploration guide. We’ll break down different options you can pursue. We can help students get experience in their field and that’s a really good jumping off point,,” said Stark.
Career Services is also available to alumni who will receive more hands on training and advice in how to obtain employment in their relevant fields. Stark believes that Career Services is one of the most underutilized services on campus. Career Services can review resumes, cover letters, portfolios, Linked In profiles, as well as provide volunteer opportunities. The staff members of Career Services can assist with career exploration or help students search for appropriate Masters programs.
“We’re good at helping people explore their options in a nonjudgmental environment. Our organization is set up as students helping students so you get the sense that you’re equals. It’s casual and informal and that makes students feel more comfortable,” said Stark.
Stark’s multiple experiences and facets in so many diverse organizations and programs on campus have given her perspective into the time spent at university.
“The biggest thing is putting yourself out there. For me, that is trying new things. At Niagara College, I took philosophy which I never did before. I loved it so much that I still take it now. University is the best place to try new things and narrow down what your interests are and where your passions lay,” said Stark.
Assistant Campus News Editor