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MCLA is ‘Where I Needed to Be’

08/25/16

Being part of the women’s soccer team proved to be pivotal to Paige Fairman ’16. Not only did the support of her teammates make all the difference during her freshman year, the experience empowered her to become who she is today, and to grow into someone she never thought she would be.

“They helped me overcome and accomplish so many things through my four years, both academically and personally,” Fairman said. “My team was one of the best things to happen to me, and I owe a lot to them academically and personally.”

Because of her teammates, Fairman said, “I became a member of so many different honor societies, and I graduated summa cum laude. Through the confidence the team helped to instill in me, I became a Student Athlete Mentor, where I assisted my teammates academically, socially and athletically.”

She also became a tutor, and participated in undergraduate research, which she presented at MCLA’s Annual Undergraduate Research Conference.

This fall, Fairman – who earned her Bachelor of Science degree in psychology with a minor in social work – will begin graduate studies in social work at Westfield State University, and a new job as a relief residential counselor for ServiceNet, where she will help people with traumatic brain injuries.

“I will take them shopping, help them clean and cook, and be a companion and a friend. I am excited to embark on this, as this job is in my field and I will get to know so many different kinds of people from staff, clients and their families,” Fairman said.

Highlights of Fairman’s MCLA career include serving as the sole captain of the women’s soccer team her senior year, and her internship at a skilled nursing facility, Williamstown Commons, during her junior year. That experience opened her eyes to the many opportunities available to her, if she pursued a master’s degree in social work.

“I really enjoyed the one-on-one time, and hearing all about the residents’ lives,” she explained. Now, “I want to make difference directly in the lives of people as well as being someone to advocate for those who may not be able to advocate for themselves.”

Fairman gives high praise to MCLA’s departments of psychology and social work.

“Each professor I have had the pleasure to be taught by really cares for their students’ academic success. They know each student as an individual, and will ask how their games, plays, and concerts went,” she explained.

“They genuinely want to see their students succeed in whatever it is they love. They are always around for extra help or just to chat,” Fairman said. “This College is where I needed to be.”