Rachael Flanagan might seem like another familiar face walking down the halls at WVU Parkersburg, but now it’s time to take the opportunity to get to know her better.
WVU Parkersburg student, Rachael Flanagan, won the first ever Junior Homecoming Queen awarded in September. Before being crowned with a tiara, Flanagan walked around campus introducing herself to other students, talking to them and worked hard to put herself out there. Flanagan believes this strategy is ultimately what unexpectedly won her the crown. After winning, she felt relieved as well as surprised.
Flanagan explains she chose to attend WVU Parkersburg because the education program is accredited and has the sense of a small knit community. After spending time in a criminal justice program, Flanagan decided it wasn’t for her and went to her sister, a teacher, for advice. “She saw in me what she saw in herself in the education program,” Flanagan said.
Flanagan was born Apr. 20, 1999 and currently resides in St. Marys, W. Va. As a child, Flanagan’s favorite place to go was Disney. She loved going on Disney trips because they have always been family orientated. Her mother used to tell her to ‘create memories, not tangible items.’
When she isn’t at home, school or at The Station (where she works), she enjoys spending her free time in Disney with her close family. Recently, Flanagan was accepted into the Disney College Program where she will have the opportunity to work at Disney for the next couple months. “When I got the email, the first thing I did was call my mom to tell her,” Flanagan said. During this time, she will continue pursuing her education degree and possibly taking classes at Disney. Flanagan explained she would miss her family, but has no doubt they will come and visit often while she is there.
Flanagan’s favorite movie is Disney’s, Brave. She explains this is her favorite movie because she relates to the main character as she is independent and strong, but still needs her family. When Flanagan isn’t watching Brave on her TV, she is probably binge watching her biggest addiction, Law and Order.
Before Flanagan attended Professor Freda Bradley’s class her first semester, her favorite subject was English. Flanagan described Bradley as the teacher who inspired her the most as she taught her about the real meaning of History and it isn’t just about memorizing dates. Bradley made such an impact on Flanagan’s life that now she aspires to teach history as well as become a historical fiction author.
“A good teacher is someone that can relate to where you are,” Flanagan said. She believes a teacher is more than a person reading from a PowerPoint presentation.
Flanagan explained if she had the world’s attention for one minute she would simply say, “adopt don’t shop.” Two years ago Flanagan adopted one of her best friends from the Pleasants County Humane Society after volunteering to gain hours in the education program. After bringing home the mixed breed, they have been inseparable ever since Gideon became a part of her family.
Family is one of the most important aspects of Flanagan’s life. Flanagan explained she admires her mom the most because “she’s the bomb.” Flanagan’s biggest fear is disappointing the people that believe in her. From winning Junior Homecoming Queen to being accepted into the Disney College Program, Flanagan is working hard to make her family proud.