Professor Patricia O’Connor has been teaching at Sage for nearly four decades. Nationally recognized in her field of community psychology, during this time she most certainly could have left the college in search of greener pastures.
So, what has kept her rooted here?
In Professor O’Connor’s mind it’s actually quite simple: “I’m here because it’s Sage.”
For her, that statement says it all. But to satisfy someone who might not fully understand, she will say:
“This is a teaching institution. And I love teaching. I enjoy helping people find out who they are, what they want to do, and where they want to go.”
Professor O’Connor has also found being a member of the Sage faculty means getting the chance to “continually re-invent yourself.”
During her time at the college she’s helped start the master’s program, and through this program has been able to share with students her interest in finding ways to improve the quality of life for women and their children, as well as her work in the area of violence prevention. Her research has also made her a widely recognized expert in developing and evaluating master’s level training in psychology.
While Professor O’Connor has been growing and changing, so has her role as a teacher. She’s been part of a movement in her department to have the study of psychology increasingly be connected to its many practical applications.
Today, psychology students go on to numerous types of careers, and Professor O’Connor and her colleagues work together to prepare students for these various opportunities, including developing their leadership and creative problem solving skills.
“For those who need our help,” Professor O’Connor says, “We’re here to guide them along their way.”
With a rather extraordinary level of experience and commitment.