Aliya Headley '13
Randolph-Macon College student Aliya Headley ’13 is excited about
starting a career as a French teacher. Très magnifique!
This fall, the Woodbridge, Virginia native will begin teaching at Patrick Henry
High School in Ashland. Headley, a French and
English major with a minor in secondary
education, can’t wait to put into motion her years of training.
“I came to college knowing that I wanted to teach French,” she says. “It is a subject
about which I am passionate, and I want to share that knowledge with others.”
Headley, the recipient of the Georgina Childs and Marcel de Jouvenal Prat
Scholarship, spent her junior year studying at L’Université de Nice Sophia-Antipolis
in Nice, France.
“The scholarship fully funded my year
abroad,” she says. “I took classes in French in subjects ranging from literature
to conversation. It was a fantastic experience, being immersed in the French culture
and studying with students from all over the world. In my spare time, I traveled.
I started off small by exploring Nice, but I quickly moved on to other cities in
France and eventually took a weeklong tour of Germany and Luxembourg. I even had
the opportunity to visit Alicante, Spain to meet up with some R-MC students studying
there for January Term.”
Getting used to life in France was difficult at first, but quickly got better.
“I was the only R-MC student at L’Université de Nice Sophia-Antipolis, so I didn’t
have any friends going into the process,” she says. “Once I started classes, I made
friends and it definitely made the transition a lot easier. Instead of having to
get accustomed to France on my own, I could do it with others who were experiencing
the same challenges.”
Clubs and Organizations
To say that Headley is an active member of the R-MC community is an understatement.
She served as a Resident Assistant
for two years and is a member of
Alpha Gamma Delta, Ujima Gospel Choir,
Omicron Delta Kappa, Sigma Tau Delta, and
Pi Delta Phi. In addition, Headley, the first recipient of the Ritchie
and Sue Watson Scholarship, a member of the Honors
Program, and a Presidential
Scholarship recipient, has also worked in the
McGraw-Page Library for four years. Her advice to new freshmen reflects
her belief that student life offers unlimited possibilities.
“Pay attention to your grades but don’t let them consume you,” she says. “It’s really
easy to slip into the mindset that your grades are the only thing that you need
to think about, but that is not the case. College is also about learning about yourself,
your passions, and your goals.”
Headley is thankful to R-MC’s dedicated faculty for their mentorship and guidance.
“Professor Aouicha Hilliard, my academic advisor in the French Department, kept
my passion for French alive,” she says. “English Professor Amy Goodwin, with whom
I worked on two Schapiro Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF)
projects, kindled my love for translation and medieval French. And Professors Brenda
Davis and Leslie Roberson in the Education Department were instrumental in helping
me prepare for a full-time teaching position. When I was offered the job, the first
person I went to was Professor Davis, and we celebrated together. You won’t find
this kind of connection at larger schools, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”
For 30 years, R-MC’s Bassett Internship Program
has been successfully placing students in internships in the U.S. and around the
globe. The Bassett Internship Program works closely with students to help identify
their interests and match them with an appropriate internship opportunity. Randolph-Macon’s
alumni provide a strong network of support for students
throughout their time at the college or in assisting them after graduation with
career direction and opportunities.
Students may choose to pursue academic, paid, or volunteer internships in a wide
variety of settings; recent internships have seen R-MC students gaining valuable
knowledge and experience in fields including health care, finance, non-profit, communications
and media, education, politics and law, and the arts.
The Randolph-Macon EDGE,
the cornerstone of the Center for Personal and Career
Development, helps students lead the pack when competing for jobs and top
graduate schools. Students have the support of faculty, career coaches, alumni and
staff as they focus on their personal and academic ambitions.