Feature Article

Staff member wears multiple hats, including grad student

Kemuel Hawkins
Kemuel Hawkins

Kemuel Hawkins not only carries a full plate of workday responsibilities, he also uses a second plate for educational, spiritual and personal commitments.

Currently working in the Educational Opportunity Programs Support Center at Purdue Calumet, the Gary resident fills two roles – 21st Century Scholar Coordinator and Intercollegiate Student-Athlete Academic Support Advisor.

The positions fit him well. “I’ve always been a patient person……. I am a good listener,” Hawkins said. “When I was 10 years old, the older people would share with me.” With a goal of obtaining a master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling psychology in the near future, the Gary resident also attends classes at Purdue Calumet and is serving an internship at the Campagna Academy in Schererville.

Adding to his already overflowing schedule, Hawkins serves as a part time instructor at Purdue Calumet and is an ordained minister, having served at both Mount Zion AME Church in Gary and St. John AME Church in East Chicago.

The determined grad student may not have a lot of free time, but when he does, he makes good use of it. Being with family, playing basketball and doing yard work are examples. Hawkins truly enjoys every area of his very-full calendar.

“I’m curious about life. This has led to the journey down various paths,” he said. “As the years pass, I feel that this (counseling) career suits me very well.”

Hawkins has been in his current position since 2010, after working in the Purdue Calumet Fitness Center as an exercise specialist.

Persevering toward his goals, Hawkins keeps a positive mental attitude in all that he has to do.

After all, the area in which he will be working in the future – the Mental Health field – definitely requires that type of attitude, as well as patience and understanding.

These are all skills developed through preparation for his graduate degree, which equals into experience that will put Hawkins ahead of the game when interviewing for that next job.