Danielle Lake, Ph.D.

Liberal Studies

Educational Background
Ph.D. in Philosophy, Michigan State University; M.A. in Philosophy, University of Toledo; B.S. in Liberal Studies, Grand Valley State University

How do you contribute to the success of your students?
I really hope to empower our students and help them recognize that they have a role to play in addressing the problems we're facing in the world today. I want to create the confidence that they can make a difference.

What advice would you give to prospective students?
I would advise them to believe in themselves and to take risks, to give it a try, and see what comes. Often when you pursue something you're passionate about other doors open for you. That's how you become who you're meant to be.

What is the most rewarding aspect about teaching at Grand Valley?
Empowering students to see that they have a role to play in making a difference, and to help them believe in themselves.

What is your favorite class to teach?
One of them is called Wicked Problems of Sustainability. The course really helps students not just talk and read about the complex problems we're facing in the world today, but go out there and do something about it.

What do students like best about your class?
The passion and the commitment that I bring, as well as the opportunity to take their own disciplinary expertise, their own values, and their own experiences and to bring those to the table.

What do you like most about teaching at Grand Valley?
I love our students. I think they're passionate, committed, and motivated to learn. They blow me away with the quality of the work they're doing. Mentoring students and being a part of their growth, helping them to become who they want to be and do what they want to do, is incredibly rewarding.