Spirit of Spring Hill: Chalisse Peltier ’13
Chalisse Peltier ’13 exemplifies the Spring Hill mission of learning, faith, justice, and service for life. In recognition of her dedication and commitment to advocacy and volunteer work, the psychology major from New Iberia, La., was awarded both the Outreach Service Award and a Spirit of Spring Hill Award her senior year at SHC.
After graduation, Peltier immediately began work online through the University of Alabama, pursuing a master of social work degree through the school’s distance learning program. In addition to her graduate coursework, Peltier is gaining real-life experience as a prevention educator at Lifelines, a Mobile, Ala. agency committed to assisting individuals and families in crisis through counseling, assistance, referrals, and education.
During her four years on The Hill, Peltier dedicated her time and energy to local children, adolescents and families. While remaining on the Spring Hill College dean’s list, Peltier tutored and mentored at St. Mary’s Home and worked as an ESL (English as a second language) site coordinator and tutor at Denton Middle School through the Foley Community Service Center.
Dr. Lisa Hager, psychology department chair and Peltier’s advisor, comments that Chalisse knew early in her time on campus what career path she wanted to pursue. “She made sure that she took the appropriate classes and she gained work experience to complement her interests,” says Hager. “She truly exemplifies the mission of our college. I am very proud of her and am sure that she will make an important difference in a lot of people's lives.”
Peltier explains that inspiration and encouragement from her SHC professors helped get her where she is today. “Spring Hill continues to impress me – as it is a ‘home’ away from home,” says Peltier. “I chose Spring Hill because of the Jesuit mission, beautiful campus, and small community on the Hill where faculty and staff are very supportive of their students.”
Assistant psychology professor Dr. Jamie Franco-Zamudio has worked with Peltier extensively over the past four years and says that she selected Peltier as a teaching assistant because of her outstanding performance as a student and campus leader. “I have always been impressed with her work ethic and boundless energy,” says Franco-Zamudio. “She is engaged and self-motivated. During her time as a teaching assistant, my students commented frequently on Chalisse’s patience, availability, and constructive, supportive feedback.”
As an undergraduate, Peltier worked hard to find a balance between volunteer work and school, participating in many community service projects, and remaining actively involved in Delta Gamma, Psi Chi, Sigma Tau Delta, and the Spring Hill Student Government Association.
“Of all of the talented students I have known, Chalisse stands out for her level-headed approach and her dedication to social justice,” says Franco-Zamudio. “As a student, leader, and teacher, Chalisse has continued to impress me. I would rank her in the top 5 percent of all of the undergraduate students I have worked with at Spring Hill College over the past six years.”
Despite the generous praise, Peltier remains humble and grateful for the opportunities her Spring Hill experience has provided. “I could not have done any of this without the support of my family, friends, and coworkers,” says Peltier. “I was well-prepared for graduate school and my job because of my Spring Hill education.”
Peltier plans to remain active on campus as part of the Spring Hill College Alumni Association and through her community outreach work with Lifelines.
In conjunction with Lifelines Counseling, the Spring Hill College Psychology Club, and the Wellness Center’s Peer One Project Action Team, Chalisse Peltier will present a program on suicide prevention training on Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2013. Open to the SHC community and public, the training will be held in the Gautrelet Room at 7 p.m.
The second Lifelines presentation, Sexual Assault Awareness, will be held October 15, 2013 at 7 p.m.in the Gautrelet Room. This program is also open to the SHC community and public.