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Student Profile: Jason Folkert ’09

Jason Folkert “knew he wanted to go to college in the area” and toured many nearby schools, but one visit to Hope was enough for him to know the college was where he was “meant to be.”

He was attracted by the friendliness of the people, the smiles he received even as a visitor in the Pine Grove, and the Christian atmosphere that is a central part of the college’s character. In high school, Jason was involved in the sciences and knew that he wanted a college with terrific science and education programs, and after two years here, he’s convinced that he’s “come to the right place.”

As an education major focused on chemistry with a mathematics minor, Jason has to study hard, but has always really enjoyed it. “It’s a lot of work, but it’s a lot of fun,” he says. “The chemistry department is top-notch. It’s one of the top ones in the nation, and the faculty is amazing. They care about their students so much.”

Jason’s goal is to teach high school chemistry after graduating from Hope, eventually going on to get his Master of Education degree so that one day he can be a guidance counselor or a principal.

As a resident assistant Jason is already gaining valuable experience as a leader and peer counselor. He works as a part of Residential Life in Kollen Hall, the largest residence hall on Hope’s campus. “Being an RA is a lot of fun,” he says. “You get to know your residents very well, and you get to have a chance to lead them down the journey of college—to help them get on their feet here.” He loves being able to form relationships with other students and providing opportunities to build community at Hope, and his training as an RA has helped him to learn how to be organized, to think on his feet, and to deal with all kinds of situations.

Four years of student council in his hometown of Hudsonville, Mich., and a sincere love of people have led Jason to SAC, Hope’s Social Activities Committee. Jason became involved with SAC as a freshman and made some close friends, and now is part of the leadership. Working for and with other people has become a passion for Jason. “I really enjoy putting together activities for the student body,” he says. Jason’s desire to help people and form friendships has brought him down many paths at Hope, and deciding to get involved was “one of the best things I’ve done at Hope College.”

This profile was written by Megan E. Dougherty, a 2007 Hope College graduate from Normal, Ill., for the 2007-08 Hope College Catalog.

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