Early in the Fall of 2012, when I was still brand new at Luther, this sophomore approached me after my Global Politics class and asked: "I want to be your research assistant. Do you have anything that you need help researching right now?"
I didn't. I was prepping my first classes at Luther, I think I was still finishing up my dissertation, and was still trying to figure out which keys opened my office. But Emily clearly wanted to get involved in Political Science research, so I came up with some things that could get done and officially hired my first student assistant.
Fast forward to 2015. Instead of going to watch a panel at the Midwest Political Science Association Conference I was driving Emily to Urgent Care, so she could figure out if her foot was broken. It wasn't. Just a bad sprain. But she was still going to have to be on crutches for a few days. That did not stop her from, two days later, presenting the paper she, Jordy Barry (another great Luther alumna), and I wrote on how the U.S. media covered Dilma Rousseff's 2014 presidential campaign.
Now Emily works in Amman, Jordan. Before she left we were able to catch up and have a really great talk about her life before, during, and after Luther College. It was great to learn more about my first research assistant, talk about her time at Luther, about her adventures in D.C., and her plans for the future.