#PittsburghMe: Meet Brighid Butler Shanahan, Funeral Service Major and Resident Educator Student Profile
Meet Brighid Butler Shanahan
- Funeral Service
- College Activities
- Resident Educator
- Munhall, Pa.
- High School
- Serra Catholic High School
"I choose Point Park University because of the funeral service program offered here. Point Park has a partnership with the Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science (PIMS) that allows students to receive a bachelor's degree in funeral service. Many mortuary science programs across the country do not offer a bachelor's degree."
Why did you choose Point Park University?
I choose Point Park University because of the funeral service program offered here. Point Park has a partnership with the Pittsburgh Institute of Mortuary Science (PIMS) that allows students to receive a bachelor's degree in funeral service.
Many mortuary science programs across the country do not offer a bachelor's degree, but instead offer an associate degree or diploma program. Point Park is the closest university to PIMS, so I have been able to have early exposure to faculty and staff at PIMS.
How is Point Park preparing you for your career?
As a funeral service student, Point Park offers a wide range of classes and two different concentrations to choose from within the major. As a business administration concentration student, I take mostly business classes, but I also have psychology and science classes.
As a funeral director, it is important to have many different skills in the areas of business, psychology and science. Point Park enrolls you in these types of classes from day one.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve been given by a professor?
"You got this; everything will be okay." Although that is a simple statement, it is one of the most important pieces of advice I have received. This came from Dr. Mark Marnich. He saw that I was in need of some encouragement and by a simple statement was able to give me the support that I needed.
When I am having a bad day or having to study for a big test, I think back to this statement to remind myself that I got this and I have people supporting me.
How has your experience as a resident educator impacted you?
The experience of being a resident educator has impacted me in so many ways, more than I can even list. I work with the first-year student population and because of this, I am one of the first people that they meet when they move in to campus. I am able to be a support system for my residents, a familiar face on campus if they need help and a person for students to seek advice from or talk.
This position has also allowed me to meet many different people. Without this position, I would have never met my residents, different professional staff at Point Park or my fellow REs. Every experience this opportunity has given me has been incredible and I have grown so much.
Where is the best view of the city?
The best view of the city is from the 20th floor of Lawrence Hall, especially at night. It gives a different perspective of the city that many people do not get to see. The windows in the hall allow you to look out toward the Monongahela River where you can see all the bridges, as well as Mt. Washington.
Another window allows you to overlook the city and all the buildings, which at night are all lit up. Half of my camera roll is scenic pictures taken out of different windows throughout Lawrence Hall.
What advice do you have for incoming students?
Get involved with a group or organization you are passionate about. Point Park offers many different clubs, groups and organization for all different interests. Being a part of these groups allows you to meet other people with the same interests as you. It also allows you to be part of some cool events and meetings.
Something is always going on at Point Park so connect with a club or people with similar interests as yourself. However, if you do not see a club or organization that interests you, it is really easy to start one!