Bethany Jane Thoelke

Elementary education (LTE) major, from St. Peters, Missouri

Bethany, how is your learning inspired at CUC?

The small class sizes are just one of the benefits of being a CUC student. You really get to know your classmates and your professors, and they get to know you. Professors care about you and really want you to do well.

What else was important to you in choosing CUC?

I've known about CUC my whole life. My parents attended Concordia, and my dad's first call as a music director was at a church a few blocks from campus. So I spent the first years of my life around CUC. It just feels like home. 

I also chose CUC because of the music program. My mom was in the Wind Symphony under Dr. [Richard] Fischer, and I think it's so cool that I'm under his direction as well, 25 years later. The focal point of the Wind Symphony's spring tour this year was our Carnegie Hall performance in New York City. In one of the pieces we sing the hymn "Who Puts His Trust in God Most Just," which says a lot about our faith. There were a lot of high school students in the audience, and as Dr. Fischer says, they leaped out of their seats after we played that piece. It was such a special moment. It gave me goose bumps and brought tears to my eyes. The energy of the group at Carnegie Hall was just so awesome—it was an amazing feeling.