Story and photo by Dan Landau
After graduating from Fairleigh Dickinson University in May this year, Lindsay Kania is back in the classroom. Except this time, she is teaching the class.
A two-time FDU alumna, Kania holds a BA in psychology (’09) and a MA in clinical and mental health counseling (’12). She’s putting her knowledge to use teaching General Psychology at the College at Florham to undergraduate students.
“I am definitely enjoying teaching. What really makes it enjoyable is getting to know the students in my class on a personal basis,” says Kania. “With my background in counseling, I like getting to know people past the academic side of things.”
Kania is working hard to make her classes interesting for her students. “General psychology is all about theories,” she says. “So, I’ve been using a lot of YouTube clips in class to make the material more engaging. When I show funny clips, it makes the material more memorable.
“I showed them a clip from ‘The Big Bang Theory’ to illustrate operant conditioning (shaping someone’s behavior through consequences) and they loved it. ‘Parts of the brain’ is a particularly boring chapter, so I used a ‘Pinky and the Brain’ clip to liven up the lecture and the class thought it was hilarious.”
As a recent graduate, Kania isn’t much older than some her students, but she says, “I look at the age difference as a positive thing because I can relate to my students easily. There’s no reason why being young can be anything but a positive and my students have all been very respectful.”
As for the future, Kania is on her way to becoming a counselor. “I passed the national licensing exam in the spring and now, I am just waiting on the state to give me my LAC,” says Kania. (An LAC — Licensed Associate Counselor — is sort of temporary permit that comes before earning the LPC — Licensed Professional Counselor — designation.) In the meantime, Kania says she is enjoying teaching her students and living in Morristown.