But from the start she got involved in her residence hall and made some of her closest friends among the women on her Sherburne Hall floor that year.
“When I came to school I was kind of an introvert, and I’ve definitely become an extrovert,” she said. “Being part of Community Council forced me to go out and meet people. I think if I lived on my own in off-campus buildings … I don’t think I would have met people.”
Now as a junior, Barringer is a leader in the Residential Life community where she serves on the Social Justice Committee and the Coborn Plaza Community Council. In addition to the social aspects of on-campus life, she said she enjoys the safety she finds in on-campus living.
“We talk a lot about social injustice, race, sexism, all those things that are really important right now,” she said.
She also plans social events to help students in Coborn Plaza Apartments come together as a community. When she’s not volunteering for Residential Life, she’s working at the department’s offices and service desk in Benton Hall.
Whether it’s attending a class, going to a meeting or working in her on-campus job, Barringer said she keeps busy at St. Cloud State.
She chose the university for its School of Education’s stellar reputation and to fulfill her dream of becoming a teacher.
“I loved campus and I loved how the education program ran, so I just knew I wanted to come here,” she said.
As a high schooler, Barringer babysat for a boy with special needs and the experience inspired her to pursue a career helping children with emotional-behavioral disorders.
While at St. Cloud State, Barringer worked as a personal care assistant for a boy who has autism and did 20 hours of field experience in a classroom with young children who were eager to learn.
“It’s a lot of fun getting to know somebody who has special needs and getting to have a closer look at what I’ll be doing in the future,” she said. “… The field experience was my favorite part. Sitting in class learning about it is pretty cool — experiencing it is even better.”