By Roza Panos
Senior Katherine Rathgeber’s plan is to become a missionary in Kansas City after graduation. She would like to work in the office of Deaf Ministry for the Archdiocese of Kansas.
Rathgeber is originally from southern New Mexico and was unaware that Quincy University existed. She originally planned to attend engineering school, but after developing a strong bond and friendship with a member of the Deaf community, she had a different plan.
“It’s been awesome. I love the interpreting program and really enjoy what I’m doing now,” Rathgeber said.
She recently wrote a proposal suggesting ways for Deaf Ministry to grow. She proposed a sign language class, which would help teach the hearing community in the parish to talk to the Deaf community.
“I think a lot of the times people are worried to talk to a Deaf person and don’t know what to do or where to start. It’s hard in a good way. Deaf people are appreciative for people who try,” Rathgeber said.
Rathgeber feels she is ready to serve in the Deaf community and in the church. Friend and roommate, Theresa Gorrell, remembers when she first met Katherine.
“Having Katherine as my roommate was a huge blessing because we shared the same values and we could really relate to one another,” Gorrell said.
Gorrell feels that Rathgeber is an inspiration. She prioritizes things in her life and is the most virtuous person she has ever met.
“Even on a bad day, she still carries a smile on her face and has openness and joy to each person she meets,” Gorrell said.
Jane Meirose, instructor and director of the interpreting program, has taught Rathgeber for four years and feels she was a “star student.”
“She has progressed and doing well and I think she will continue to do well in her career,” Meirose said. “I do my best to prepare my students to interpret in any all sorts of areas such as, educational, medical or legal interpretation.”
Interpreting allows Rathgeber to communicate with others. She is able to help empower others.
“I feel like this is where God has placed me and this is what I’m supposed to be doing. I absolutely love it,” Rathgeber said.