Abbey Stegenga is a self-described “nerd” and a nurse wannabe who decided to study English instead.
While the MJM crew questions Abbey’s choice of descriptor – her footwear game is too strong for full nerd status –, everyone here agrees that becoming an English major was a good choice. One of our beloved summer interns, Abbey’s wit and approachability made it impossible for us to part with her so we did the wise thing and hired her as a part-time staff writer. She’s been gracious to have us, especially considering the other job offers she received and that we have yet to procure her a proper desk.
But even with a less-than-ideal workspace, Abbey has made herself invaluable to MJM. Her past writing experience as a journalist and tutor has been foundational to her new life in marketing, and her growing skill as a writer is bolstered by her reliability and follow through.
In her words, “I just love art, media, stories – and they’re everywhere, even in the most basic things.”
Abbey is a hometown girl and a proud graduate of some of Sioux Falls’ finest institutions – Anne Sullivan Elementary, Whittier Middle School, and Washington High School. After graduation, she headed to North Dakota State University, but she missed home and discovered that her major – nursing – wasn’t a good match for her love of stories and words. She swiftly transferred to Augustana University, moved home, and hasn’t looked back.
As much as she likes her work for MJM, Abbey’s true favorite jobs include animals. She shows two Arabian horses, Indy and Tosca, throughout the Midwest and Canada. She’s had several successes astride her beauties, but the proudest came when she was 14 and was crowned a Canadian National Champion. Rounding out Abbey’s pet family is Charlie, her three-year-old cowboy corgi.
She’s pretty proud of her human family, too. It includes her dad, Doug, and her mom, Colleen, and her older sister, Emily. The Stegengas have always been a close knit bunch, and this coming summer they’ll permanently expand their circle to include Sam, who will marry Emily.
Fittingly, Abbey loves to read. In fact, for her, tucking in at home with a good book is the ideal way to spend an evening. For an added challenge, she sometimes tackles the Spanish version of her favorites: The Bell Jar, My Year of Rest and Relaxation, and Normal People. Her reading time is even better when it’s accompanied by a treat from Nothing Bundt Cakes and a pumpkin spice latte or authentic Mexican food from a local eatery.
Welcome, Abbey! The MJM team is better with you aboard.