Lysel Bender dreams of becoming a writer and a publisher after receiving a double major in English literature and creative writing.
Bender is one of more than 1,100 students eligible for fall 2021 graduation. Learn more about her time at Wichita State and what is next for the grad.
What degree did you earn?
I am receiving a double major in English literature and creative writing.
What is your hometown?
My hometown is Wichita, Kansas.
What led you to Wichita State?
That I live in Wichita but especially my mom encouraging me to not stop at an associate degree.
How are you feeling leading up to graduation?
A little apprehensive and excited for the next stage of life.
What has been your most helpful learning experience while a student at Wichita State?
Honestly, everyone in the English department has been amazing. Those are top-tier professors. Everything I learned from them has been incredible.
What has been your biggest challenge as a student, and how did you overcome it?
Learning how to balance work, school, homework and fun. I also struggled with perseverance in general and whether it was worth it. I’m not sure if I ever found a good balance. I never gave up, I learned to be patient with myself and understand that I'm not perfect, nor is my homework. It is also 100% worth it.
What are your plans after graduation?
I’ll be looking for a remote job that will allow me to move out of Kansas and continue pursuing my writing and publishing goals and dreams.
How has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your time at Wichita State or your post-graduation plans?
It certainly made it hard to connect with other students and my professors. More of my time at WSU was spent in online classes rather than in person. The professors were great though and still made an effort to interact with us.
What advice would you give other Wichita State students?
Pursue a degree that you are passionate about. Life is going to be hard and wasting time on something that you don’t care about is going to be difficult to put effort into. It’s OK to switch majors. Don’t give up, don’t give in – it will be worth it in the end. You are not alone either. Don’t be afraid to reach out to others. We’re all in this together.