Majors: Mathematics and Theater

Jillian OrrHometown: Girard, Pa.

Further Degrees: I received my Master of Education from the Harvard University Graduate School of Education with a focus on educational media and technology.

I am blessed to have an amazing job as the production assistant in WGBH's Interactive Kids Group.

The most important enhancing experiences while at IUP would be my time in the HC in general, my time abroad, and all of my work in the Theater department. Studying abroad is a must. The first time I went abroad, I went to Croatia, where I performed Grizula, a show that had been directed in Waller Hall by a Croatian director. During my senior year, I studied abroad—first for two weeks in Vienna for an amazing Honors Senior Synthesis course, and then for the Fall semester in Budapest, Hungary, where I studied Mathematics. These experiences changed my life. They are crucial components of my current success, and the memories and friendships are still very much alive in my life.

Majoring in mathematics has prepared me for understanding the technical and coding aspects of projects in which I am involved at work and has also prepared me for assisting in the production of math-focused projects for kids. My theater degree positively influences things that I do every single day—from writing to brainstorming to project managing and beyond. All of my theater courses have impacted every aspect of my work and of my play. Directing shows has benefited me creatively, managerially, and beyond. Both theater and mathematics are still very present in my life, and I owe that to the wonderful experiences that I had in my undergraduate time at IUP.

The HC has had such a huge impact on my life. Whitmyre is home to friendships, sleepless nights, brilliant Core presentations, singing, food, studying, talks, and discussions about the world. My HC friends were motivated, determined, crazy-intelligent, witty, fun-loving, and an all-around good time. We worked hard and we played hard. Core was intense—really it was—but the education I received from Core has allowed me to engage with brilliant people. What's even more, the professors from the HC are devoted to the success and well-being of HC students. They made me want to change the world and they pushed me—and still even today continue to push me—until I reach my full potential. For me, there was absolutely no better place to get my undergraduate education. The HC was and still is truly the best.