Last week, one of our students, Alyssa Vilaylack, had the pleasure to interview the LYL Alum Kathy Kethdy. She was one of the first people to be in LYL when it started. The program had started as public speaking exercises and grew into community service projects and learning opportunities. Kethdy says, “When the program first started I was in middle school and extremely shy, and speaking in front of my peers helped to develop my leadership and public speaking skills”. This is still similar to what we do today! Currently, we do teamwork exercises, leadership lessons, and all the things we do most definitely help as a confidence booster.
Right now in terms of school and work, she is very busy! Kethdy is a senior in the nursing program at Loyola University Chicago, and will be graduating in May. She was one of less than five students chosen to be in Loyola Medical Center’s Medical Intensive Care Unit (ICU). She’s super excited to start her career as a nurse, but definitely not excited for the licensure exam that comes with it! For work, she is a Patient Care Technician (PCT) at Loyola Medical Center on their Cardiovascular Unit. She helps nurses by washing up/feeding patients, taking vitals, drawing blood for cultures and obtaining heart rhythm strips. One of her favorite things is the cardiac system! She would love to work on a similar unit once he graduates. In addition to all of this, she is President of the only nursing club at Loyola, the Student Nurses Association of Illinois at Loyola (SNAI-L). They host numerous amounts of community service projects on campus. These can include a bone marrow registry drive, making tie blankets for the nearby Community Center, knitting baby hats for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, and making Valentine’s Day cards for pediatric patients in the hospital. All of this must be so stressful, so props to her for being so hardworking and diligent!
With all of this work comes accomplishments and opportunities! One of Kethdy’s biggest achievements is from when she was in high school. Everyone in her class was given lines from Romeo and Juliet to perform in front of the class, and she received the best grade because of her drama and commitment to the lines! I’m sure the speaking exercises from LYL sure helped! Kethdy’s goals for the rest of the year include graduating and passing her state licensure exam so that she practice as an RN! She’d also enjoy working in a hospital in the city, preferably university related.
After all of these serious questions, Kethdy was also asked some fun ones! First we asked “What’s something you’ve always wanted to try but have been too scared to do?” to which she replied, “I have always wanted to go scuba-diving but I have a huge fear of drowning. Also, I am not the strongest swimmer so that does not help my case at all”. I think all of the LYL members would agree!
Next we asked “If you could teach one subject in school, what would it be?” She responded with, “It would definitely be English. I also love math, but I feel that it would get monotonous grading all of those papers. I have always had a loe for reading and English, and I think that each assignment would be different and interesting to grade and teach. Also, I feel that in the new age of technology where information is at your fingertips, I think it is more important than ever to instill a love for reading in children. I’m not ready for the end of hardcover books!”
Another question was “What did you want to grow up to be when you were younger? Why?” She told us, “Going back to my love for reading, I wanted to be a librarian when I was growing up. Reading, sorting and recommending books all day seemed like the best job in the world. I believe that my early love for reading has aided immensely in my writing and vocabulary. I still visit the library regularly at my school and read for leisure as much as my free time allows”. Speaking of, LYL is interested in starting a book club! I think many of our members would be interested in joining! Maybe we should invite alums to the book club too!
The last few questions were “What makes you laugh?” and “What’s an essential item you always have with you?” Kethdy said, “Anything that comes out of either of my sisters’ mouths. Also, my dad is a pretty funny guy.” and also “My headphones! They are made with real wood to give clearer acoustics and a deeper bass. Without my headphones, I would constantly be motion sick on the el and city buses.” She should meet some of the current LYL members! We love listening to music too.
Finally, we asked her, “What’s a piece of advice you could give to current LYL members?” She replied, “Don’t underestimate the power of being a good public speaker, and treat every experience as a learning opportunity.” We couldn’t have said it better! Thank you Kathy Kethdy for giving your time to be interviewed.