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Rachel Troutman
My name is Rachel Troutman. I am from the small town of Saint Matthews, South
Carolina. I am the daughter of Jerry and Margie Troutman. I am a member of Gethsemane
Baptist Church and I attend regularly. I assist my mother in her 1st-3rd grade Sunday school class.
Our church recently started a bus ministry and I enjoy assisting with the children that come to
church on the bus. They usually do not have a family to sit with during the service, so I invite
them to join my family. I was taught to always be compassionate to others as Jesus was. I was
raised in the church and I am a Christian.
I graduated from Calhoun County High School. I was a part of the Calhoun County
Cheerleading Squad and received several awards during my time as a cheerleader. I was a part
of the Early Childhood Development program at the Technology Center in Orangeburg, SC. I
enjoyed learning about children, I realized that I wanted to be a teacher, and I participated in
competitions for the Technology Center. When I graduated from high school, I decided to attend
Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College (OCtech) to pursue an Associates Degree in Early
Childhood Education. I earned the Life Scholarship and planned to transfer to a four-year
university, but I was not sure which university would be the right fit for me at that time. In
summer 2011, after my freshman year at OCtech I was in a terrible car accident I fractured my
neck in four places and tore two arteries. I was in a halo when I left the hospital, but I was
blessed to be alive. Because of these events and my rehabilitation, I was not able to return to
college in the fall. I took a semester off from school out of necessity. However, I was determined
to continue my education, and I returned to OCtech in the fall of 2012.
After completing my third semester at OCtech I began to consider other colleges and
universities in which to transfer. I researched several different universities. I realized that I am a
community-minded woman. Even though I had never been on its campus, I had heard great
things about Claflin University. I scheduled a visit for me and my parents. The campus visit met
and exceeded everything I had heard. I toured Bowen Hall and talked with students in the School
of Education. That day I completed an application and I became a proud Claflin student in the
fall of 2013. Through my matriculation at Claflin I have learned to continuously strive for The
Claflin Imperative: Preparing Students for Leadership and Service in a Multicultural, Global and
Technological Society. During my time at Claflin I have served the community by assisting a
preschool teacher at a local child development center. I have also assisted with an Easter egg
hunt for the Boys and Girls Club. I am currently student teaching and I strive to stay involved in
the student activities, which means that I have participated in the walk to school day and
organized a presentation for an African American Heritage Program.

I plan to graduate in 2016. Upon graduation, I plan to work for a school district in the
state of South Carolina. After my first year of teaching, I plan to work on a Masters in
Curriculum and Instruction at Claflin University. I plan to continue teaching and obtain by ED.D
in Learning and Instruction. I wish to retire after many years of teaching and come back to
Claflin University to teach as a professor, or to be a mentor to those who have been where I have
been. Throughout my career I want to inspire others in my community, especially women. I want
them to know that there are opportunities out there, but it is necessary to put in the work to make
your future brighter. I want them to know that no matter what hardships you may face, you can
overcome them and go forward. This is what I teach my students. I frequently tell my students
that I could see them as a doctor, lawyer, businessmen and women, teachers, etc. to encourage
them that they can go anywhere that their mind takes them.