Kayla James

Kayla James
Bristol, Vermont
Singing Sinners, UpBeats, Psi Chi, Reading & Math Tutors

In high school I had the opportunity to take an introductory psychology course. I recall the teacher saying he knew some students in the class would go on to be psychology majors in college, but I was sure I wouldn’t be one of them because my plan was to major in economics. During my first semester at St. Lawrence, I took psychology with a lab in order to fill my lab science distribution. After the first two weeks of class I knew that economics was not going to be the major for me because I was far more interested in psychology than in economics. After that I took as many psychology courses as I could get credit for. While I enjoyed every psychology class that I took at St. Lawrence, I was particularly interested in Developmental Psychology and Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities because of my ambition of teaching after graduation. I found both courses very applicable to the work I did with the Reading & Math Tutors program, where I worked as a classroom assistant in preschool and kindergarten classes for three years. My favorite psychology class came during the fall of my senior year when I took Social Psychology with Dr. Jessica Swanner. I got a unique look at psychology research while assisting in one of her projects throughout the semester.

Outside of college and kindergarten classrooms, I spent most of my time in rehearsals for two a cappella groups. I was part of the Singing Sinners (all-female a cappella) since the first week of my freshman year, and was elected Musical Director my sophomore, junior, and senior years. I joined the UpBeats (co-ed a cappella) at the beginning of my junior year when the group first formed, and also served as Secretary. I was part of University Chorus for three semesters, and sang with a small community choir at church services in Gunnison Chapel throughout my four years at SLU.  In addition to singing, I attended the psychology department faculty meetings as a student representative from the psychology honorary society, Psi Chi.