Even though he is still a student, Michael Rieger is already hard at work putting his stamp on the world. During one of his summer vacations he went to northern Israel where he volunteered to teach English to elementary-age children. He also regularly volunteers at summer camps in and around Kansas City, including a grief counseling camp for children who have lost one of their primary care providers in the last year.
"It's just another opportunity to help someone out," he said.
After he came to Missouri State, Rieger decided to major in economics. "I picked economics because I enjoyed the classes, had great professors and was good at it. Then, the more economics courses I took, the more I enjoyed it." He later decided to pursue a double major in economics and psychology.
As a student, Rieger is involved in many campus organizations and activities. He received an Academic All-American Award his freshman year for being on the bowling team. He is a member of Phi Eta Sigma, works with alumni functions on campus, serves as an athletic tutor, and is actively involved in residence life, housing and dining services as a resident assistant and National Residence Hall Honorary member.
He speaks most fondly of his time as a peer leader for incoming freshman students. "We were paired with a teacher to serve as a student face in the Intro to University Life classes. I helped the professor with lesson plans; I helped the freshman get involved in the university, and kind of acted as a mentor who could answer their questions."
Rieger will have an opportunity to study away in Bulgaria during his time at Missouri State. He is currently planning on going to graduate school after he completes his bachelor's degree.
He is also supportive of the University's public affairs mission and has completed a distinction in public affairs.
"I was able to work with higher University officials and talk with them about where they want to go with [the public affairs] mission. They are trying to teach students that a college experience isn't just about getting a degree, making money or getting grades; it's about putting your stamp on the world in a positive way and making a difference."