The Path to Politics
Kathleen Edmonds is matter-of-fact about her decision to come to Saint Mary’s. “I was not serious about school after graduating from high school, so I applied to SMU at the last minute because it was so close to my home (a five minute walk) and my brother was in second year Finance.”
But it turned out to be a decision that would change the course of her life. As a result of her decision to attend Saint Mary’s, she became enthusiastic about the world of politics. She credits her grandmother with instilling an initial interest in politics, and a certain professor for nurturing that interest into a passion for politics.
“I was a bit lost as to what I should do with myself and my future. But Dr. Ron Landes saw a hidden potential and nurtured it until I saw it myself.” She says he believed in her and became a mentor.
“Dr. Landes was spectacular in the sense that he never quashed my way of doing things or my eccentric tendencies. He merely gave me the tools and skills I would need and let me apply them to my life in a way that was right for me.” She adds, “he never once told me what to do. Dr. Landes opened a window into a world that I craved, and prepared me for life in general.”
Saint Mary’s, while initially appealing because it was close to her home and her brother’s choice, also turned out to be a good fit for Kathleen in many other aspects. She discovered the Saint Mary’s community to be “close-knit” with “great class sizes.” She says it is the “perfect transition from high school.”
As for political science, she was most impressed by the courses Dr. Landes had to offer. “He provided ‘meaty’ courses that get young people interested in what many people think to be a very boring and dull field. For example, Spying and International Politics, and Political Violence which deals largely with terrorism.”
Kathleen completed her three-year Bachelor of Arts degree and then opted to return for a fourth year in order to apply for Master’s programs. “I also matured and sharpened my academic discipline in order to better prepare for graduate work.”
Her hard work and performance during her upgrading year paid off when she was chosen to study at the prestigious Norman J. Patterson School of International Affairs at Carleton University. As for her future she says, “I cannot see myself in one career for the rest of my life.” She believes flexibility is the key and she thinks a political science background allows for that.
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