Andrea O'Malley

A Saint Paul resident has been selected as a fall semester Outstanding Student at Metropolitan State University.

Andrea O'Malley, who graduated with a master of arts in psychology, was chosen as an outstanding graduate student in the university's College of Community Studies and Public Affairs. She was one of 1,368 students receiving bachelor's and master's degrees at Metropolitan State's 101st commencement exercises on Saturday, Dec. 9, 2017 in Minneapolis.

Four months after earning her bachelor of arts degree in psychology, O'Malley was back at Metropolitan State, enrolling in the master of psychology program.

With a full course load and a full-time job as a targeted case manager with Ramsey County, O'Malley had her work cut out for her, "My main challenge as an adult student has been maintaining a full-time work and school schedule. I am fortunate to work in an environment that supports continuing education and was therefore able to be flexible with my work schedule."

O'Malley also tutored in the Psychology Lab and for data analysis. She says that her most memorable times at Metropolitan State were, "getting involved in research by both going to conferences and by collaborating with other students on campus.

As a first-generation college graduate, O'Malley really caught the learning bug and has higher aspirations. "Next? I'm hoping for more school. I have applications out to several Legal Psychology PhD and JD/PhD programs and am hoping to gain acceptance for fall admission."

O'Malley survived her college experience by taking "mini-vacations" with her husband and their two Chihuahuas. "We tried to sneak away every couple of months, even if it's just for a few days." To her celebrate her master's degree, O'Malley and her husband plan a west coast road trip accompanied by their beloved dogs.