Haley Danielle Hawkins


photo and interview by: Angela Karen

Name: Haley Danielle Hawkins

Age: 22


I received a Bachelor of Science in Communication Disorders and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Auburn University on May 8th

Why did you choose this career path?

I didn’t always know I wanted to be a Speech-Language Pathologist. When I was growing up, I wanted to be a teacher, a pediatrician, and a children’s author. One thing that has remained constant is that I have always wanted to help kids. They make me happier than anything. After exploring many careers, I found Speech-Language Pathology and fell in love. While observing speech therapy sessions in Auburn’s clinic, I was so excited to see children reach milestones and excel in their speech and language. More than anything, I want to make a positive impact in the lives of others, and I think that speech pathology is the best way for me to use my talents to help people.

What are your plans after graduation?

I was accepted into the Speech-Language Pathology graduate program at the University of Alabama. I’m so excited to also be serving as a Graduate Teaching Assistant in the same department and will be working on my thesis for the next two years. Ultimately, I want to work with children who stutter in a clinical setting.

In college, what courses did you enjoy the most? Why?

My absolute favorite class was one of my Fluency, which was taught by Dr. Plexico. I loved learning about all the different elements that go into Fluency Disorders and seeing how much research still needs to be done in the area. It was the first class that made me want to read the entire textbook ahead of what was required in the syllabus.

Another class I really enjoyed was Research Methods, in the psychology department. Most people dread taking this class, but Dr. Buskist did such an amazing job teaching us about the research process. This helped me so much once I became a research assistant and inspired me to continue research in graduate school.

Describe any research project you’ve worked on. What was the purpose of the project and what was your role in the project?

After falling in love with Fluency, I became an undergraduate research assistant for Dr. Plexico my senior year. Our project is about the experiences of workplace discrimination with people who stutter. I had so much fun helping with the accumulation of prior research, creating the survey, and data collection. This summer I will be working towards the completion of the project.

What are you going to miss the most about Auburn?

I’m going to miss everything about Auburn! I love the small town feel, all the traditions, and the friendly people. It’s been “my town” for four years and I hate to leave it! I’m going to miss the people I’m leaving behind the most though. My little brother, Garrett, and my boyfriend, Connor, are the hardest goodbyes. I hate thinking about it!


Tell us about Greek life at Auburn.

I love Greek Life. It made a campus of 25,000 students feel so much smaller and allowed me to get to know so many people. I was very involved in my sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha, where I served as Historian for one year and as Vice President the next. I learned so much as a leader in my sorority. I also love the “big-little” program in sororities. My Big, Meredith, is one of the main reasons I joined Zeta and is one of my best friends. She even came back in town to celebrate my graduation! My relationship with my little, Judith, was also an incredible part of my college experience. I don’t know what I’m going to do next year without our weekly dinner dates.

Do you have any unique social traditions?

Auburn has TONS of traditions. Most people know about Auburn fans rolling the trees after football victories and that’s definitely a fun one. I also love saying “War Eagle” to everyone! My favorite tradition would have to be Auburn’s mascot, Aubie. I have taken so many pictures with him and I always get so excited when I saw that friendly tiger on the concourse or at events. He was the best mascot in the nation nine times for a reason!

What is your biggest achievement?   

It may be because it’s at the front of my mind, but I was pretty excited when I graduated summa cum laude. If I hadn’t made a 4.0 this past semester, I wouldn’t have met the requirements. My last final was in public speaking, which ultimately determined which honors I would receive, and I was going to kick myself if I didn’t receive an A in that!

What is your biggest fear? 

I’m scared of living a life with no purpose. I want to touch people’s lives and meet inspiring people. I’m scared to miss out on opportunities and memories. I just want to live my life to the very fullest.

If you had to live your life over again, what one thing would you change?

I have a thousand memories, especially from college, and I wish I would’ve had time to make a thousand more. But ultimately, I believe everything has happened exactly the way it was supposed to and that God has a larger plan for my life.

People who know you best say that you are…

Well, the seniors in my sorority did superlatives at the end of the year and I got “most likely to have 10 kids” which I thought was pretty funny. Although I don’t want TEN kids, I always want to be around children, whether it’s at home or at work.

Whether it is in a few hours or a few years, what person do you see yourself becoming?

I want to be a mom. That may sound corny or cliché but I think the most wonderful thing a person can be is a mother. Everyone says that my mom said the same thing when she was my age. That’s encouraging to me because if I could have my mom pass down any trait, it would have to be her amazing motherly instincts.

What are your strengths and weaknesses? 

Strengths- I’m a pretty patient person. I think that’s why I want to work with kids so badly.

Weaknesses- I’m a little too emotional at times. But I call it being “sentimental”.

Current obsessions

I’ve been really into cooking (or trying to at least). I figured that since I’ve graduated college, I should be able to cook for myself. My favorite thing I’ve ever made is a vegetable dish with sweet potatoes and Brussels sprouts. I’m still a little nervous to cook meat.

One thing you can’t live without:

I couldn’t live without the people in my life. I have an absolutely wonderful mom and dad, my little brother is my number one fan (and I’m his), and I couldn’t imagine a better boyfriend. My family and all my friends are definitely the biggest blessing in my life. I could live without any of my possessions as long as I have “my people”.

Words you live by… 

“Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving happier.” -Mother Teresa


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