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Kate Yeater

Major: Anthropology
Minors: Natural Resources and Environmental Science, Native American and Indigenous Studies, and American Studies

Kate Yeater

Hi! My name is Kate Yeater and I graduated from Purdue University in May 2017 with a degree in Anthropology Honors with minors in Natural Resources and Environmental Science, Native American and Indigenous Studies, and American Studies.

I grew up in the rural Midwest and had 59 other classmates in my graduating class; coming to Purdue felt like going to the big city! Yet when I arrived on campus, I was immediately introduced to the Boilermaker family - at my Honors College residence of Shreve, with my Boiler Gold Rush group, and among College of Liberal Arts peers in my first-year learning community.  

This firm sense of belonging helped me build confidence in myself and in my academic pursuits as I navigated the ins and outs of college life. The College of Liberal Arts and the Department of Anthropology quickly became my base of learning and networking. Developing close relationships with faculty enriched my Purdue experience because I had wise mentors who helped me identify what lit my soul on fire and championed my academic and post-grad pursuits. I conducted research in Hawaii with the Presence to Influence research project, joined an Engineering Projects in Community Service (EPICS) team, and shared my research at conferences all because of the network I built with faculty across CLA. 

For incoming students, I recommend you take advantage of all the resources and opportunities that exist at Purdue. Whether it’s study abroad, an internship, leadership and mentoring opportunities, therapy sessions with CAPS...there is so much to choose from no matter what you need. This is the time to try something new (take an acting class!), join an organization that supports something you’re passionate about, and learn things that might just change the course of your life! 

Since graduating, I’ve lived and worked in the wilderness of Idaho, taught kids about sustainable agriculture in Alabama, served as a Peace Corps Environment Volunteer in Malawi, and worked for state parks in Montana and Idaho. I am currently the Visitor Services Ranger at City of Rocks National Reserve and Castle Rocks State Park in southern Idaho. These jobs have all required me to interact with diverse groups of people, think and write critically, and consider global issues in small-scale settings. Many of these skills I gained in CLA classrooms, at a field school in the Brazilian Amazon, among first year students as a Boiler Gold Rush team leader, and in leadership positions with Purdue Anthropology Society and the Honors Mentor Program. 

Whenever I get pangs of nostalgia for Purdue, I wish I could transport back in time to weekend mornings spent walking all over the beautiful campus, feeling gratitude for the chance to attend such an incredible university! Four years can go by quickly, so soak up all there is to love about college and know that your experiences will be valuable to whatever adventures you seek post-grad.