Unsung Hero Megan Rudne Hoffecker
Jeff Lamson – General Assignment Reporter
Megan Rudne Hoffecker, assistant director of academic advising in the First-Year Experience Program, has deep roots in being involved at Southern since her experience here as an undergraduate student.
As an undergraduate, Hoffecker had been a resident advisor at both Hickerson Hall and North Campus Townhouses for a total of three years. There, while getting her bachelor’s degree in art education, Hoffecker was able to learn more about leadership and responsibility as she helped students in their resident experience.
“I had a cross-section of experiences working with students, “ Hoffecker said, “living alongside them as a sort of peer.”
She was also responsible for managing behavior and enforcing policy. She was later inspired to get her masters degree in science of special education with a concentration in autism after nannying a young boy.
“He had classical autism, so he was nonverbal, and he taught me so much about the world,” Hoffecker said. She went on to say that she was captivated “by that particular, exceptional mind that he had, and I wanted to learn about it from an academic lens.” During this period, Hoffecker was also working in the Office of Student Conduct and Civic Responsibility as a graduate intern.
She then became the hall director for Hickerson Hall, where she was the leader of 10 resident advisors and all of the students who lived there. Hoffecker said it was “the best job I’ll ever have.” It allowed her to further explore leadership and responsibility while also being able to increase the scope of her “educational reach.”
Now, in her position in Academic Advising, Hoffecker has brought all of her experiences along to help students in their first year at Southern and beyond if they ask for it. She says she loves when she’s able to help students get back from the bottom to get back in good academic standing, sometimes through the Fresh-Start Program. “That’s really rewarding work,” Hoffecker said.
A member of the Sexual Assault Resource Team, Hoffecker helps in making sure that the organization is prepared for incidents of sexual assault. Also, being a member of the SCSU Sustainability Committee, Hoffecker does service days working in the SCSU Community Garden and meets with the committee every semester in the name of sustainability.
“To come here,” Hoffecker said, “and to be immersed in this vibrant community has been an absolute pleasure for me.” She also said about the New Haven area, “It’s just a wonderful place to be home.”
Currently in the second year of working on a doctorate in educational leadership, Hoffecker said, “I think my ultimate goal is to change the world.” Hoffecker plans to change the world by increasing the scope of her educational reach even further.
Describing her approach to her goal, Hoffecker, also a vegan, said, “I arrive every day of my life, everywhere I go, thinking about social justice, thinking about inequity [and] thinking about the ways in which humans and non-human animals in our natural world are impacted by our individual and collective decisions.”
Photo Credit: Jeff Lamson