Maggie Kirst (’18) prepared for a career as a teacher while studying at TIU, and learned quickly that effective teaching goes hand-in-hand with servant leadership.
“Trinity offered me a community that focused on Christ and building relationships with people that love the Lord,” Maggie says. “It also opened up some doors for me to serve the community and to also pour into other people, which was also important to me.”
While a student, she served with the Illinois School Project. Each week, she mentored students in public high schools, giving them advice and helping them to start Christian clubs on their campuses.
When TIU embarked on a summer Leadership Institute for high school students, Maggie volunteered as a student coach. She used her experience in TIU’s Emerging Leaders program as a foundation for her coaching work.
“Maggie cares deeply about people–you can see it on her face,” assistant professor of Education Susan Corapi says. “She learns from everyone and everything! She positions herself as a learner in all her interactions.”
Work outside the classroom didn’t keep Maggie from maintaining a perfect 4.0 grade-point-average, holding TIU’s prestigious Kantzer Scholarship, or membership in Kappa Delta Pi, an honors club for education majors.
Perhaps her greatest honor was the 2017 Lincoln Laureate Award, presented to one TIU student each year at a ceremony in Springfield at the Old State Capitol.
“I am beyond humbled and thrilled to be the recipient of the 2017 Lincoln Laureate Award,” Kirst said. “It truly is a great honor and there were so many other deserving candidates.”
Maggie, who came to TIU from Galena, Ill., looks forward to combining her love for serving people with the expertise she gained in the classroom.
“I am excited to put into practice all that I have learned at Trinity by integrating my Christian calling with my vocation of teaching in a cross-cultural setting.”