Senior Joshua Stinson Received College of Arts and Sciences Humanities Award

Joshua Stinson is recognized by College of Arts and Sciences Dean Sue Martinelli-Fernandez and Associate Dean Jim Schmidt at the CAS Spring Awards Ceremony.

Graduating senior Joshua Stinson has been a student leader throughout his years in the department. He has served as the president of our Phi Delta chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the English Honors Society, and he has also served Sigma Tau Delta as a midwest Regent for the national organization. He has also been a contributor and managing editor of The Mirror & the Lamp. We reached out to Joshua on the occasion of his award.

M&L: What is the award you won from CAS?

JS: The award I earned from the College of Arts and Sciences is “The 2023 Student Council Honorary Award Winner in Humanities.”

M&L: What are your accomplishments that CAS is recognizing with this award?

JS: In order to earn this award, you must be a be a senior, currently enrolled (in the Spring semester) as a full-time student, and have attended Western Illinois University for at least four semesters (including the current semester). Additionally, you must have a cumulative GPA of 3.6 or higher. The purpose of the award is to recognize the overall outstanding achievement of a student who shows promise for the future. Some personal achievements that may have helped in the consideration of the award is that I served as the Midwestern Student Representative and WIU chapter president for Sigma Tau Delta and served as the Managing Editor for The Mirror & the Lamp last year.

M&L: How has the department of English helped you with these remarkable achievements?

JS: The English Department has been remarkable in helping me to accomplish all that I have and has inspired me deeply to pursue further endeavors. The personalized education that they have been able to provide has allowed me to feel prepared to take on challenges that come after college. Just to name a few, Dr. Banash and Dr. Helwig were extremely helpful in my time in Sigma Tau Delta. They encouraged me to take on leadership positions and to become the managing editor for The Mirror and the Lamp. I worked with Dr. Buchanan on my Honors College Thesis. She helped me merge topics that I was interested in with assignments and projects to further my degree. I also want to give my gratitude to a member of the department who has since moved to a different university. Dr. Chistopher Morrow was one of the first faculty members that I became close to at WIU. He encouraged me and made me feel welcome, even in challenging courses. He had a large impact on my education! This list is not exhaustive of all of the professors that I’ve had and cherish my time learning from. I don’t want to ramble on for too long, but I’ve loved each class with every professor I’ve had in the English Department.

M&L: You just graduated this year. What comes next?

JS: While it feels weird to say, I did just graduate. For right now, what comes next is teaching! I’ve accepted a job at Monmouth-Roseville Jr. High School in Roseville, IL. I will be teaching 7th grade ESL (English as a Second Language). Additionally, I hope to start coursework for my Master’s Degree soon! In October of this year, I will also be marrying my fiancé. We met at WIU, but she’s not in the English Department.

M&L: What advice would you give to someone considering majoring in English at Western?

JS: If you’re considering English at Western, there’s no better advice that I could give you other than this: Do it. I’ve never once regretted the choice I made to come here. At first, I was nervous I wasn’t going to be good enough. I never thought English was my strong-suit. The faculty are so helpful and you make so many friends that will help you along the way. Outside of taking that leap, make connections once you get here. The faculty are friendly and love to meet with you if you have questions. Try to find a friend in each class! It will help you feel included and give you some extra homework help if you need guidance!