Celebrating our 2023 Graduates

Double Major Reflects on Opportunities, Building Community at Roger

By Melanie Thibeault
Parker Schwartz

Parker Schwartz ’23, a Secondary Education and English Literature double major, will pursue a career as a high school teacher after working for the Disney College Program for a semester.  

Classroom Experience: “The intensive courses in the Education department and all the classroom experience leading up to student teaching has given me a good view of what teaching is before I become a teacher. I’m currently teaching English at a high school in Fall River, Mass. I have two sections of inclusive classes – English language learners and students with individualized education plans. I’ve learned how the same lesson plan has to be broken up differently for each student and accommodate all their learning styles.”  

Opportunities Abound: “I’ve had so many opportunities through the English department. I took a paper from my English literature analysis class about transphobic elements in the movie “Shrek” and was able to present it at the Richard Macksey National Undergraduate Humanities Research Symposium at Johns Hopkins University. Through that, I was able to publish my paper in The Macksey Journal. Being able to present something that’s so important to me, I wouldn’t have had that opportunity without the English department.” 

Finding Community at Roger: “My favorite part of the last four years has been the community I’ve built on campus. I’ve been very lucky to have them. During my freshman and sophomore years, I lived in the Queer and Trans LLC, which allowed me to meet other queer and trans people. Finding that connection was really important to me.”  

Schwartz, of Cranford, N.J., has served on the executive boards for Hillel and the Sexuality and Gender Alliance.  

Every spring, as Commencement nears, RWU spotlights members of the graduating class. Suggestions are welcome. Email: stories@rwu.edu 

Celebrating our 2023 Graduates