Children’s book illustration major
Hometown: Canton, Ohio
“As soon as I was introduced to the Mazza Museum, I was
instantly hooked,” said Lauren Bagley, a children's book illustration major
from Canton, Ohio, who never has regretted her decision to attend The
University of Findlay – the very first college she visited.
Bagley always has loved art, and when she learned she could
do illustrations for kids’ books, she knew it was the perfect career goal. She
enjoys the ability to choose what she creates and what medium she uses to
Bagley credits her academic adviser and art professor Valerie Escobedo with helping her "shine and really tap into" her potential.
Escobedo “has been an amazing mentor, a great confidante and even a source of
inspiration,” said Bagley. “She’s not just my professor and adviser. She’s a
friend, and I will always enjoy the time I spent with her here.”
In addition to Escobedo, Bagley named Jerry Mallett, Ed.D., founder
and curator of the Mazza Museum, as being especially helpful to her. During
spring break this year, Bagley traveled to New York City with the hope of
contacting children’s book publishers. “I was so terrified to head out there …
but he was so helpful and kind by grabbing me a fabulous contact,” she said of
Aside from her art major, Bagley has tried – and succeeded –
in getting the most out of her college experience.
She has worked with the Japanese program, the theatre program, the English department, information technology services and the psychology department on a variety of projects. Bagley even traveled to Japan
as part of the KAKE Bridge program, which immerses a group of students into the
Japanese culture for three weeks each summer.
Her extracurricular activities have included Student
Government Association, Campus Program Board and American Sign Language Club.
The extracurricular activity that holds a special place in
Bagley’s heart, however, is the Technology and Gaming Club (TAG), which she
joined as a freshman. “I found so many friends through TAG … it was just
overall a very, very positive place to be,” said Bagley.
She started as the club secretary, later became president
and will complete her tenure as vice president, helping the new president take
TAG to “bigger and better heights.” Bagley credits the organization with
helping her develop her leadership skills.
Bagley encourages other students to be open to new
possibilities. “It doesn’t matter if you’re an art major or a science major or
an equine major. Get out there and experience as much of the University as
possible,” she said. “Findlay has so much to give its students … Not being
bored is as easy as opening up your planner and finding something to do. Get
up, get out, make some friends, and drink in all there is here. I did, and I’m
so glad I chose to.”
After graduation, Bagley will leave campus with fond
memories of Findlay. “The classes were engaging, the organizations were
fantastic and my professors were one-of-a-kind. I got to be in a play, go to
Japan and have my art hang on campus. I’m not a number here. I’m Lauren.”
Looking ahead, Bagley says, “I can’t wait to step out of
that door and do great things, because I know I can, and I know I will.”