Featuring Jade Hengel, a Junior at MNSU. Jade is majoring in Health and Physical Education, and she is also currently serving in the Army National Guard.
Jade’s favorite hobbies are photography and writing. She is most likely to be found on campus at the dining hall enjoying her favorite food; pepperoni pizza, lounging at the Veterans Resource Center where she spends her free time finding volunteer opportunities, or working on new projects with the Film Production club.
Upon graduation, Jade would like to pursue a position as a Health and Physical Education teacher, along with continuing with her photography in her spare time.
What are some ways in which attending MNSU has helped shape your life?
“I grew up in a really small town, so when I finally clicked accept to MNSU, I knew that my life was going to change. I registered for classes and on a whim took an Army Physical Fitness class. I realized later that it was part of ROTC, and I fell in love with everything about the army, so I decided to enlist in the Minnesota Army National Guard as an (88M) Motor Transport Operator. If I hadn’t decided to attend MNSU, my life would be so much different, and I wouldn’t have found all of these things and people that I love.”
What helped you decide on your major?
“I never saw myself having a future being a Health and Phy Ed teacher. When I got involved with ROTC on campus I found the motivation for health and fitness that I never had before college. It kind of ignited a spark in me that I never knew was there. It made me realize that I want to help kids and young adults find their motivation to stay active and set goals.”
What is some advice that you would give to your younger self?
“I guess I would tell my younger self not to worry about finding her place, because she will find it just fine.”
What is something you wish someone had told you before attending college?
“I wish someone had told me how hard it is to find a balance between having fun and getting stuff done. It really is trial and error, and feeling it out, but it is so much more difficult than I expected before coming to college.”
What is your favorite memory from living in the dorms?
“My favorite memory of living in the dorms is when my roommate and I went to get ice from the ice machine. It came out so fast and we had such a small cup that it went everywhere and we both just sat there staring at each other, laughing. I definitely recommend living on campus, it’s such a unique experience – it allows you to make so many friends and it’s very convenient.”
What is the best piece of life advice you have ever been given?
“The best piece of advice I’ve ever been given wasn’t really a piece of advice at all – it was more like friendly yelling. We were doing a morning run with the Maverick Battalion, and I was really struggling to keep up and keep going. My friend Jenna said, “You’re never going to get any better if you quit every time it gets hard,” and that really stuck with me.”
Feature photo courtesy of Jade Hengel.