Hi, my name is Shabnam Etemadi and I'm one of Tennessee's Best!
I was born in Tehran, Iran and moved to Brentwood, TN when I was seven years old. I graduated from Brentwood High School.
I have to admit, MTSU was not my first choice because both of my older sisters went here and I wanted to be different. I looked into many other schools, but always kept Middle Tennessee as an option. Then, when I visited the campus with my sister I really fell in love with it! I had visited other schools, but MTSU seemed to stand out because it had an intimate campus with a huge population. I love diversity! I don't like knowing everyone, I like meeting new people. Here I felt like I could meet someone new everyday and still make the campus my own. It ended up leaving a greater impression on me than any other university. I felt I could make a name for myself here; it seemed like a campus full of opportunities. So big, yet so family-like!
So I chose to come to MTSU and I am so glad I did! Everything is very independent in college, which can be very overwhelming! Yet there is so much opportunity here. It was easy to make friends; no one is hesitant to speak with you. I was most looking forward to the diversity that MTSU offers. I went to a predominantly Caucasian middle and high school, so by the time I graduated I needed to meet people from different places who had unique backgrounds. I definitely accomplished that goal here at MTSU. Even now that I am graduating I can't believe how much the diversity has grown. I love seeing all the international students and just the different styles people express on campus. I learn something new from people here all the time. It is a privileged experience.
The professors are also super friendly. They are available to assist you and want to see you succeed. I am now in my senior year and will receive a degree in Psychology. I have always had a passion to help people. I initially wanted to be an immigration lawyer, but my junior year of high school I took AP Psychology and was fascinated by the subject. I kept to it and majored in psychology to become a Multicultural counselor. I also love the Spanish language and culture and took Spanish courses all through school. Then, I decided to make it a minor. As a counselor I would like to establish programs for immigrant families to help them transition in their moves from country to country in order to remain mentally healthy and stable.
One of my professors will be the most inspirational person for me for the rest of my life because of her compassion to teach me about Multiculturalism and about being a counselor. The professor is Dr. Michelle Stevens. She has truly made an impact on me as an undergraduate, and because of her drive I have learned how to be a better student and future counselor. She was willing to work with me one on one and we plan to do research together. Currently, I am working under her as her teacher's assistant. This experience will help me tremendously as I prepare to enter graduate school (perhaps here at MTSU!).
My first semester of my freshman year I commuted to school everyday. My parents are very protective and wanted to make sure I could make it on my own. I later moved into an off-campus apartment with my sister. I really wanted the experience of living on campus, so my junior year I moved into Deere Hall. It was great…I loved every minute of it! I chose my roommate over the summer and we began living together in Fall 2009. Then she left for another school, so for Spring 2010 I had a new roommate. I was incredibly scared and did not know what to expect. My new roommate was wonderful, though! She was so nice and considerate. Living on campus was so convenient and easy. It took some time to get used to a public restroom with a shower, but my suitemates were all so nice! I loved being able to walk out of my dorm and onto the campus. It saved me time and money. I felt like there was always something to do or someone to talk to when you live on campus. Of course, being so close to the library is also a plus when it comes to studying!
Staying on campus also helped me to get involved in activities outside of the classroom. I am a member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Psi Chi International Honor Society in Psychology, and the Order of Omega (Greek Honor Society). Additionally, I serve as president of the Multicultural Greek Council and am a member of Lambda Theta Alpha Latin Sorority, Inc.
Some of my best memories are from my freshman year because everything was so new and surprising. I was immensely curious about all of the buildings and classes. My best experiences have definitely been working closely with the faculty here and learning from them. I am very thankful that I went Greek, too. I became way more involved once I joined Lambda Theta Alpha. My best memories are working with my sorority sisters to make a difference on the campus. I love working with the Greek community on campus because we are all so active and ready to get involved in helping the campus and community. I will never forget staying up all night for St. Jude's at Up til Dawn. We took silly pictures, ate food, played games, and danced while raising money. Greek Week is always a blast to work and I'll always remember the passion we have for being Greek. Homecoming events and the NPHC step show will remain a highlight of my undergraduate years. Also, living in the dorms and helping with the We-Haul really enhanced my campus life. Lastly, the James E. Walker library will continue to be a great memory because sitting in the Starbucks and drinking my caramel macchiato while typing papers or studying my textbook will continue to be my study method as it helped me ace many essays and tests.
MTSU is definitely a college to consider. College is what you make out of it and MTSU has the resources and opportunities you need in order to have a successful college career. It is continuously growing and catering to the needs of all of the students. You can be a part of this tremendous growth and gain a valuable education on the way. Along with its honors program, numerous organizations and great faculty, MTSU gives students the chance to shine and to learn. You can really leave your footprint here on campus and leave something behind for others to see what you have done.
So come and be a part of Tennessee's Best and leave your footprint with us. We are waiting for you!