Catherine Vaughan

“I take pleasure and pride in being part of a program that is collectively involved in the betterment of the lives of others.”

Hometown: Richardson, Texas

Major: Sociology
Expected Graduation: May 2013

UT Dallas Achievements & Activities

  • DEI Academic Honor Society
  • Sociology Club
  • Pro Choice Feminist Alliance

Deciding on Sociology

One semester I decided to take a sociology class as an elective ("Intro to Gender Studies"). Each week this class had the profound ability to help me re-envision my place in the world and to help me rethink the lives and experiences of others. As a result, I became intensely interested in understanding the forces that shape and impact the lives of myself and others. Sometimes the things to be learned are not pleasant, but the experience of better understanding the world and my place in it is, perhaps, one of the most rewarding things in my life.

My EPPS Success

After working with such passionate, hardworking, intelligent, and helpful professors, my greatest success in EPPS has been my ability to apply the skills and information that these professors have given me. I've done this not only through my own work regarding issues of race, gender, and religion, but also by spreading this information to the people I know in my daily life, my extended friend groups, and other students. I take pleasure and pride in being part of a program that is collectively involved in the betterment of the lives of others.

Plans for the Future

My current plans are most dictated by age and opportunity. My husband and I recently discovered a situation where we can go live in another country for several years. We've both had the desire to do this for a long time, and being able to pursue this will allow me to experience other languages and cultures. Following this, I intend to either pursue non-profit work, or return to the academic world in pursuit of a PhD.

Advice to Prospective EPPS Students

Before I knew what studying sociology would mean to me, I can honestly say that everything I had tried leading up to that point lacked both passion and purpose. Discovering an area that genuinely interests you is important and does wonders for maintaining one's momentum and motivation as you continue to grow and better understand your area of study with each new class. First, I was a sociology student. Then, I was a sociology student deeply concerned with modern issues surrounding race, gender, and religion. These things have guided me and given shape to what I envision to be a fulfilling future.

Other Interests

In my free time, I like to read or watch various television shows on Netflix. At times I've also participated in several different strategy games and related events. When I'm not too busy with school or work, I also maintain a nail art blog where I showcase various designs that I've done. Lastly, from time to time, I like to attend wine tastings.