By Michael Rubinson
CCC Journalism Program
BLACKWOOD – Camden County College American Sign Language student Jennifer Ruegg plans to stay at CCC in Blackwood once she gets her certification.
People like the 21-year-old Ruegg provide a way for deaf students to succeed in school. This is Ruegg’s second semester interpreting for students, and while she loves her profession, this was not her childhood dream job.
“I kind of just fell on it, ha ha,” Ruegg said. “I started taking ASL in high school, took it here again. I wasn’t very good at math or science but I was good at English and I don’t know, I just kept going and I am where I am. I didn’t plan to do this or really dream to be doing this. I just went through and now I am here. I love it though. I don’t consider this a job at all.”
When asked how Ruegg does as an interpreter, Kasey, who asked to go by only her first name for privacy reasons, a student who receives assistance from the CCC interpreters, smiled and signed, “Well, good obviously, I am used to the way she interprets and she is really friendly.”
As to whether she would be able to choose Ruegg to assist her in future classes if she liked how they interacted, Kasey responded, “I can ask for a specific tutor. It is my right to ask for specific ones if I want.”
Ruegg has definite plans for the next few steps in her life.
“I plan on taking my certification test within the next six months, so if a pass my cert., I can then go out into the professional world. I personally love the education field. This is like training me for what I would really love to do,” Ruegg said.
As to why she prefers to pursue a career in education rather than one in business, she said, “Education has a certain challenge versus a business meeting, like English classes I have to explain what words mean and how we use them, which is tricky. But each setting you work in has its own unique challenges, explaining something like pre-calculus and then going to a science class challenges you to be better every day.”
For now, however, she is concentrating on her certification exam
“Right now I’m just building everything up to the cert. exam,” she said. “Everything is training right now until that test. It’s already paid for too, ha ha.”