Hello! My name is Susan Olson and I am the Assistant Dean of Students for Community Life and Career Services at YDS. I am a native midwesterner (come to me when you want a pop instead of a soda!) a Presbyterian pastor (yay! decently and in order!), a former college chaplain (best. job. ever.), a singer, a writer, a canoer, a preacher and a voracious reader (including many books of dubious quality.) I love children, and spend a good bit of my free time volunteering for organizations serving them, which means, amongst other things, I am your source for Thin Mints and Samoas once January rolls around.
YDS is my alma mater, and was one of the very best decisions I have ever made. My YDS friends, even this many years later, are still my go-to people, and my YDS professors influence my life and my ministry every day. What I like best about work here is being able to help continue that tradition of intellectual engagement and a delightful, challenging, imperfect and beautiful community. If you love it here even half as much as I do, you’ll have a great experience!
In terms of wisdom, I have two: 1) Start working on your career plans as early as possible (you knew I’d say that, didn’t you, but really truly, it helps so, so much! and 2) Let yourself be here while you’re here. Drink deeply of this place. Go to things. Talk to people–your professors, classmates and all of us around you. This is an amazing, transformative, complicated but beautiful place. Make it more amazing, more transformative, more complicated and more beautiful by jumping into the quirky and perfect fray.