Why did you choose Union?
When I was applying to colleges, all I knew was that I wanted to find a strong sense of community. I came from a small, private high school where I knew the names of almost everyone, and I wanted that same thing in college. I wanted to be where there was always someone to wave to and have a quick chat with as you walk across campus. At the same time, I wanted to be somewhere with a more diverse population than I was used to, and I wanted to be in a place where I could find authentic people with common interests to myself.
I ultimately selected Union because of the amazing experience I had on Accepted Students Day. I remember feeling such a strong sense of community and college pride. The students genuinely seemed to care about each other, and the faculty and staff seemed to genuinely care about the students. I didn’t feel that as strongly at any of the other schools I visited, and I knew I needed to be a part of it. I went right to the bookstore, bought my first (of many) Union sweatshirts, and took my first photo in front of the Nott. And as I did, a student walked by and said “First Nott Shot? Welcome to Union!” and I knew I made the right choice.
How do you describe Union to your friends and family?
First and foremost, I describe Union as home. Because at this point, that’s truly what Union is to me. I have found my people here – people who I expect to know and love for the rest of my life, and I am so grateful for that. I then go on to describe the academics. As an interdepartmental Biology and English major, I have the unique perspective of experiencing both the STEM and humanities side of Union. I always discuss how easy it is to gain both a STEM and humanities education at the same time, if that is something you care about. And you can even combine them! During my Sophomore year, I completed independent research studying reproductive science misconceptions in Romantic and Modern Literature. And now, for my Senior Thesis, I’m writing a series of braided essays that explore the concept of femininity, and each essay is grounded in biological metaphor.
Then, I discuss all of the incredible extracurricular activities available at Union, which I have experienced both through the Minerva Program and through Student Activities. There is so much fun to be had here, through the joining of clubs and organizations, or simply through participation in some of our campus-wide events, like Winter Carnival, large-scale celebrity speaker events (like Bill Nye), or our big Spring concert called Springfest.
What has been your favorite class assignment at Union?
In my “Road to Canterbury” class with Prof. Doyle in the English Department, we had an assignment to create a fake twitter battle between characters from Chaucer’s tales. This was a really unique, fun opportunity to engage with the text and get to know the characters more deeply.
What is your favorite place off-campus in Schenectady?
I’ve gone to several shows at Proctors Theater throughout my time at Union, and I have been blown away by every one of them! It is incredible to me that we have Broadway-quality theater within blocks of our campus.