For many, the journey to becoming a Redhawk often starts right out of high school around the age of 18, but for SEMO freshman Alyssa Rueseler, that journey started much, much earlier.

As an infant, Alyssa attended the University School for Young Children, an early childhood education center open to University faculty, staff, students, and community. Alyssa has been a part of the Redhawk community from quite literally before she can remember. For her, playmates have become classmates, former USYC students who cared for her have become employees of the University, and Homecoming has already filled her with a lifetime of memories. SEMO is more than a college where she will receive an education; it’s home in every sense of the word.


USYC really embodied being outside and learning with your hands, hard work, and just being kind. They genuinely want you to succeed and start you from a young age this is how the world works. They put it out in front of you, let you take it with a grasp, and show you how to achieve.