For a better experience, click the Compatibility Mode icon above to turn off Compatibility Mode, which is only for viewing older websites.

Meet Heather Heim

Drexel University English Student Heather Heim

Degree: BA English & MS Communication ’20
Concentration: Technical Communication
Minor: French
Co-ops: Digital Projects Co-op, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine; Technical Writer, Oracle
Extracurricular Activities: Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity; Peer Reader/Peer Lead, Drexel Writing Center; Copy Editor, The Smart Set
Awards: Grand Prize, Literature Essay Contest (2019); Social Sciences 1st Place, Drexel Publishing Group Essay Contest Award (2019); GE College Bowl Scholarship (2018); Humor 2nd Place, Writing Festival Creative Writing Award (2017); Social Sciences 2nd Place, Drexel Publishing Group Essay Contest Award (2017); 3rd Place, Literature Essay Contest, 3rd place (2017); Ralph C. Most Memorial Scholarship (2016)

What has been the most important element of your experience as an English major?
My work as a peer reader at the Drexel Writing Center has been the most significant element. Our weekly reading, writing and discussion at the center — focusing on writing center theory, anti-racist pedagogy, and other relevant topics — has been some of the most challenging and engaging work I've done. Moreover, it gives me the opportunity to help students from all sorts of disciplines become more confident in their ability to write. I also enjoy dispelling myths about writing and English that were carried over from high school.

Have you had any travel experiences through Drexel?
My term abroad in Rennes, France was an important part of my Drexel experience. Drexel's English degree requirements encourage international and language studies, and thus, I was able to do a language immersion program. I lived with a French host family and took courses in the international center of the Universite Rennes II. It was eye opening, not only to experience French culture, but also to learn about international perceptions of Americans and the English language.

Tell us about any courses you’ve taken recently.
Recently, I've begun taking graduate-level communications courses as part of an accelerated MS in Technical Communication. While straying from my liberal arts education, I've found that the discipline requires a creative type of problem solving that still engages my linguistic muscles, while valuing language in a different way. In interning as a technical writer at Oracle, a global software company, I found that learning to understand and translate the language of software developers is challenging and rewarding.

What is one of the things that a faculty member has told you that has stuck with you?
Something that has always stuck with me is the philosophical concept of orexis, as explained by Dr. Jacques Catudal. He described orexis as a sense of striving and a strong desire to fully flourish. The idea has been important throughout my Drexel career, and has encouraged me to explore my interests and constantly seek the things that drive me.

What advice do you have for a high school student looking for an undergraduate program?
I would encourage high school students to visit schools with programs that interest them and get in touch with students in those programs. There are so many different communities within every program that current students would be able to shed light on. Drexel English has students involved in the Writing Center, Writer's Room, Maya lit mag, the newspaper, and Drexel Publishing Group, to name a few. A discussion with a current student could help a prospective student to imagine how they could fit into some of those communities.