Emily Schadt joins RCBC Board of Trustees as alumni trustee
Monday, Sep 18, 2023

Rowan College at Burlington County graduate Emily Schadt recently joined the college’s Board of Trustees as this year’s alumni trustee. As a young dance enthusiast forced to take an unexpected detour due to a sudden health challenge, Schadt arrived at RCBC as a Health Science student specializing in physical therapy after years of overcoming her health issues.

During her seventh-grade year, Emily developed scoliosis due to a significant growth spurt that affected her spine. Her situation was so severe that she needed immediate surgery to avoid puncturing her lung. After her surgery, she had to reduce her activities and avoid specific places, which led to her being home-schooled and taking a break from her dance classes. Schadt described the whole experience as really rough, especially since she had been dancing for eight years prior to her diagnosis. 

The most important advice she has for those who have been in a similar situation is: “You may not feel like it, but you will get through it. Right in the midst of all this chaos that is happening, it might not seem like it will ever end, but I promise you it will. Sometimes, it takes longer than you want, but it’s about accepting it and making the best out of any situation that you can. And there will be a time that this will be behind you, this is just a chapter in your life.”

Her doctors recommended physical therapy to regain her strength and ability to dance. Although she initially struggled with the rehabilitation process, she later realized the benefits, which inspired her to pursue physical therapy as a career.

"Having gone through the process myself, I believe it provides me with an advantage to relate and connect with kids that are struggling in PT," Schadt stated.

Due to the high cost of college, Schadt opted to attend Rowan College at Burlington County (RCBC) as it offered an affordable option for her to complete her associate degree and transfer to Stockton University after two years. She emphasizes that in addition to the affordability, the RCBC Health Science program has given her a sense of family where she was able to establish personal connections with her peers and faculty that may not be easily found elsewhere.

During her time at RCBC, she has played an important role in the college community. She has been a peer mentor, served as the SGA president, and has now been appointed as the alumni trustee on the college’s Board of Trustees. Each year, the graduating class selects one representative to serve on the board in a non-voting capacity.

Schadt is excited to attend board meetings, learn about the issues being discussed and understand how they impact the students. She is committed to supporting her peers and building meaningful relationships with the diverse group of professionals on the board.

Finally, Schadt stated, “I have a great admiration for RCBC and feel fortunate to be able to contribute to the school. Although I initially chose it for its affordability, my experience here has far surpassed my expectations. I have been involved in numerous activities and am reluctant to leave."