Student Spotlight: Allison Schraub
Major: Political Science
Interests: Student Leadership
Allison Schraub readily admits to being a subpar student who was teased by schoolmates in middle and high schools.
But Allison is amazed by her own transformation. She became an Honors student, president of the Student Leadership Council (SLC) and applied to such schools as Northwestern and DePaul in order to pursue a career in politics.
And College of DuPage, the only school that she felt would accept her, turned out to be the best decision she ever made.
"I came to College of DuPage because I couldn't afford anything else," she explained. "But I stayed at College of DuPage because I wanted to be the voice for those kids who think that they have lost all hope in the world."
Allison was one of those kids. She would miss school just to avoid the teasing and insults hurled by classmates.
"They never knew me," she said. "They never knew that while they were shopping at the mall, I was helping my mom cook dinner, and while their dad was home on the weekends, my dad was working 14 hour days."
But she believed in herself. And despite being nervous, Allison decided to give a semester at COD a try. The result was life-changing: For the first time, she earned straight A's.
"Unlike in high school, I was taking classes in subjects I was interested in and was being challenged every day," she said. "I knew it was a great opportunity for a second chance and to achieve any goal that I would set for myself."
An invitation to join the Honors program followed that first semester. Wondering whether she was smart enough to do so, Allison was convinced by Andi Liedke in the Honors program office that the students who are unsure of joining the program are the ones who succeed the most.
Still, despite loving her studies, she needed to work. During her second year at COD, Allison picked up a second job in the College's Academic Affairs office. Overall, she worked 50 to 60 hours a week to make sure her parents wouldn't have to worry. Two older brothers, Vince and Tim, both college graduates, encouraged and supported her in any way possible.
And yet she still craved more from her college experience. Inquiring about Phi Theta Kappa, the student honor society, and the SLC, Allison became the coordinator of Operations for SLC and then was elected president for the 2008-09 academic year, unleashing a newfound passion: politics.
"I have always been a strong believer that anyone can change the world," she said. "I believe that with politics, you can achieve that. You can lead in trying times and persevere to achieve the impossible."
After graduating from College of DuPage with an Associate in Arts degree in 2009, Allison transferred to DePaul University to major in political science. She also is heavily involved with the Democratic Women of DuPage County, serving as chair of the Young Democratic Women Committee. In February 2010, she was elected Precinct Committeemen.
Allison will earn her bachelor's degree in Political Science and a Leadership Certificate in 2012. She hopes to pursue a master's degree in Public Policy.
Beyond school, Allison is ready to make her dreams a reality.
"I would eventually like to become a representative or senator," she said. "I would like to travel to as many places possible, and when I retire, I hope to own a bakery, as one of my fondest memories as a child was baking with my mom. This would be my ode to her.
"My mission in life is to help those little girls who have no confidence in themselves realize their own true beauty and potential. And who knows, maybe one day I will be the first female president of the United States."