Shining Student Mary Siever (BA '19, MA '21) wanted to complete her graduate studies at the University of Lethbridge because of her experiences as an undergraduate. Aside from ULethbridge being close and accessible, during her time in the Department of Women & Gender Studies, Mary made meaningful connections with teachers.

The Department of Women & Gender studies is a wonderful, supportive, and amazing department. It really has become my home in many ways. I was just extra fortunate to find a department and teachers who made it a wonderful experience in all ways.

Meet Mary | Feminist. Advocate. Determined.
Program: Master of Arts | Major: Women & Gender Studies

Please tell us about your work-integrated learning experiences at Lethbridge?

I did a few independent studies in my undergraduate studies that prepared me for my undergraduate thesis and then my master's thesis. I received an Agility Fellowship, and the learning that came with that helped prepare me for a conference (that was cancelled because of COVID-19).

Additionally, as a graduate student, I took different workshops and graduate training sessions to make me a better teaching assistant. These were very valuable learning resources through the Thrive program. The Thesis Boot Camp and Online Teaching training were very helpful as well.

What has been your most memorable ULethbridge experience?

Connecting with the different people—my professors, my supervisor (who supervised my honour's thesis and MA), my master's committee, and the graduate students I connected with, learned with and from.

What is the most important lesson you have learned so far at ULethbridge?

Learning is a privilege but also should be a right for every person. I want to help students and potential students to know how they can succeed as students and in their personal lives. Everyone needs the right support to do well in their education that accompanies their life experiences.

Is there someone specific who has had an important influence on your ULethbridge experience?

I really cannot pick just one person. Dr. Suzanne Lenon, Dr. Carol Williams, and Dr. Jo-Anne Fiske from the Department of Women & Gender Studies have set me on my path to learning and growing how I need to as an academic scholar. Also, from the Department, Dr. Caroline Hodes has been very instrumental in teaching me to be a better scholar.

What advice would you give to those who are about to begin their ULethbridge journey?

Seek out support from others, and understand that you deserve to be here. The community you gain, with your fellow students, your instructors, and others who are there to support you helps make this a better experience. Take all the learning you can.

Favourite class: CSPT 5201 - Feminism, Gender, and Sovereignty

Favourite social activity at ULethbridge: The WGST department Meet and Greet

Favourite place to study: At home in my office/bedroom once my children were settled or asleep

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