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Kleinfehn top of SMC class

Angela Saoud | Thursday, May 13, 2004

Senior Amy Kleinfehn never planned to be Saint Mary’s valedictorian for the class of 2004. If anything, she says it was a fortunate surprise.Kleinfehn, a biology major and secondary education minor, found out in the middle of March that she was being named valedictorian.”Over the years, I worked very hard,” Kleinfehn said. “I set goals for myself academically, although being valedictorian wasn’t necessarily one of them. I made time to get involved in many things on campus, which forced me to work on time management and kept me busy.”Kleinfehn plans to focus her graduation speech on the different kinds of experiences students can encounter, she said.”My theme will focus mainly around the footprints others leave on our lives, and the footprints that we leave for others to follow us in,” she said.Many people are not surprised Kleinfehn is leading her class academically. Dr. Kitty Green, Kleinfehn’s secondary education advisor, said she could not be more pleased that the Knox, Ind. resident has been named valedictorian. “The most exciting thing about Amy is that she is a scientist, and she is going to be a teacher,” Green said. “She is a great scientist, and I know she is going to carry that over and become a great teacher.”Kleinfehn attributes her success as a student to finding balance between academics and social experiences. “I’ve tried to find a balance with my time,” Kleinfehn said. “My advice is to have fun and enjoy your friends while you can. The undergraduate years go fast, so it’s important to enjoy it while you’re there.”After the glow of graduation wears off, Kleinfehn is hoping to find a high school biology teaching position, but does not yet know where. Down the road, she plans to attend graduate school. “It’s an honor, truly an honor, to represent Saint Mary’s in this way,” Kleinfehn said. “I’m really excited for this amazing opportunity.”