While Stephanie didn’t begin her academic career at Loyola, she finished it with force in 2003 when she received a BS in Psychology, graduating summa cum laude. As one of the founders of Loyola’s Mock Trial team, Stephanie spent countless hours ironing out the details of developing a competitive group. After college, Stephanie found her calling as a children’s book author and publisher. Now based out of Marietta, Georgia, Stephanie’s most recent book, Baby Santa, the first in a holiday series of books, was released in September 2010.
What’s the most enduring lesson you learned at Loyola?
My LUC education taught me that things are not always as they appear, especially concerning social justice and prejudice. I was honored to be at a school that cared enough about its students and society to teach about these values.
What is your favorite memory of Loyola?
I loved my two years at Loyola after two years at Boston University. Loyola provided an environment of truly caring teachers. Professors Mike Walsh (introduction to law) and Carol Martin (writing) were my most memorable teachers. Professor Martin helped me refine my writing skills!
If you could go back to school, what Loyola course would you take? Why?
More writing courses; I had no idea I would be an author!
Why did you decide to become an author?
I did not decide to become a children’s book author. The five stories I’ve written just came to me like bolts of lightning. I wrote Baby Santa in an hour on scrap paper on an airplane tray table. I credit this to God and the thousands of hours I spent reading to my girl.
What is the most interesting part of your job?
The best part of writing a book is having 2-year-olds all the way up to 90-year-olds laugh out loud when I read the story. I never thought of myself as a comedian, but I guess I am!
What book are you reading right now? Would you recommend it to others?
The End of Overeating, by David Kessler – I would recommend it because it is full of scientific evidence and amazing laboratory findings that help you understand and alter your eating habits.
If you could travel to any time and place in history, where would you opt to go?
I am pretty happy with now but I guess the 1950s, before technology made life so hectic and demanding of our time. I hate that phones, internet, TV, cell phones, PDAs, wireless internet, etc., bombard us all day long and we are constantly multitasking.
If someone made a movie of your life would it be a drama, a comedy, a romantic-comedy, action film, or science fiction?
Drama with some comedy. I am both a serious and type “A” person, but I never forget to laugh and be spontaneous.
Describe your perfect day.
Being with my family with nothing to do and being unplugged from technology (except going to a movie – Megamind was surprisingly awesome).
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go, and why?
Egypt. I have already been when I was 14 and it was just mesmerizing! Amazing that they could do all that without modern technology!
What gets you out of bed in the morning?
My daughter – literally and figuratively.
What’s your favorite Chicago pizza place?
Ranalli’s in Lincoln Park.
Who would you want to be for a day?
The Pope. I contemplated being a nun, and I would love to go back to that time of heightened spirituality.
What’s your guilty pleasure?
Goobers and chocolate-covered strawberries
Which one best describes you in college: athlete, intellectual, artist, young professional, activist, or social butterfly?
Young professional. I took six courses every semester at Loyola – I had to get special permission from the dean. I also was a congressional intern for Senator Peter Fitzgerald. This experience, for class credit, was definitely something I would not have had the chance to do at any of those schools I turned down to go to Loyola. It gave me a sense of importance and confidence to be able to work at a high-profile level.