Program: Speech Communication
Note: Steve Schroeder, who passed away in 2019, was beloved by his students. This story remains as a tribute to his dedication.
Steve Schroeder always loved school. And like many community college students, he discovered his academic passions while completing his general education courses.
"Not only did I thoroughly enjoy taking my required public speaking class, I also discovered that it was a marketable skill that let me explore my very 'theatrical' side," he said. "Taking a subsequent class in debate plus participating on my community college’s forensics team solidified my passion for the area."
While pursuing his master's degree, Schroeder also taught a basic public speaking course as well as debate classes, experiences that solidified his choice of vocation. After graduate school, he received a full-time, tenure-track teaching position at his alma mater community college in California.
"I thought nothing would ever steal me away until I discovered everything that College of DuPage had to offer me and its students," he said. "The decision to leave for COD was the hardest decision I’ve ever made — and the best."
School is where Schroeder has found -- and still finds -- his greatest successes and most fulfilling experiences. He wants his students to discover that same passion.
"I hope my students come to realize that it is most important to follow your true passion and know how to effectively communicate your needs and intentions while pursuing that passion," he said. "My former students are my biggest sources of inspiration. To watch them succeed and put their communication skills to good use is all the motivation I need."