Hillsdale College

Rebecca Willis

Avon, Ohio

Entrance Term: Fall 2022

B.A. English

Hillsdale College

Rebecca was born just outside of Cleveland, Ohio as the youngest of seven children; she is the fifth in her family to graduate from Hillsdale College. Rebecca’s love for education was instilled from a young age, as her father was a Christian school administrator for over 25 years. During her time at Hillsdale, she studied English and minored in Classical Education and Spanish. After graduating in 2018, Rebecca taught at Highlands Latin School in Louisville, Kentucky for four years: two years teaching sixth grade, and two years teaching upper school literature. She also coached JV and Varsity volleyball during her time at Highlands Latin. Rebecca joined the inaugural MACE cohort in the fall of 2022 and hopes to graduate with her Master of Arts in May 2024.


Research interests: myth and poetry in Plato’s Republic, Shakespeare’s education, children’s poetry and literature, Christian education


Post-graduation plans: Returning to teaching with the hope of moving into leadership


What brought you to Hillsdale? I originally came to Hillsdale by following the footsteps of my older siblings, but I quickly fell in love with Hillsdale on my own. I found the academic atmosphere simultaneously challenging and inviting. While teaching, I developed many questions— questions that I desired, more than anything, to be answered before embarking on a lifelong vocation of teaching. When the MACE program opened, I knew that this program had been designed to respond to many of the same questions I encountered during my time teaching, and I was thrilled to return.


What has been the thing you’ve appreciated most about your time here? More than any other community I’ve been a part. Hillsdale calls its members to cultivate a philosophic habit of mind in every space— in the classroom, around the table, in the church pews. The spirit of intellectual inquiry, coupled with the humility to listen to others, pervades the atmosphere of the college; it’s a beautiful thing in which students, faculty, and friends alike can participate.


What has been your greatest academic challenge thus far?

While it has been challenging to return to the duties of a student, it’s been so rewarding to be able to take two years off from a career and fully dedicate two years to studying. Most challenges disappear after recalling that great gift that we’ve been given.


What is distinctive about Hillsdale’s Graduate School of Classical Education?

The professors’ dedication and care to each student is truly unique; each student is made to feel valuable by the great investment that the professors, and by extension, the college, is pouring into all of us. That care extends to the culture of the program itself; our cohort culture is one of camaraderie andunity— there is a great desire to see each other succeed. I think that spirit of camaraderie and unity reflects beautifully the purpose of this program and Even of education itself: to raise up others so that they may be fully who God created them to be.

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