Why did you choose Union?
When I graduated high school, I was very excited to begin my college journey. I had been accepted to a very good school – but once I got there, I learned so much about myself very quickly and I realized that particular school was not the right fit for me. I made the difficult decision to come home and begin this process again as a transfer student.
I came to Union for a day visit, which was a defining experience in my search. I had the opportunity to attend classes – “”Diversity of Life” in biology and “The History of Rock and Roll” in music – and I had lunch with current students. What I noticed throughout the day was the true joy students had being here on campus. I saw the way students and professors interacted, I saw how well everyone knew one another and truly cared for one another, and I could see myself here. It was a long process, but I don’t know that I’d have such pure love and appreciation for Union had I not had this unusual journey to get here.
How do you describe Union to your friends and family?
I always describe Union as an incredibly welcoming and exciting place to be living and pursuing my education. I always start by talking about how it really is one big community here. I feel that there is overwhelming support from professors, connection with peers, and care from everyone you meet across campus. A great example of this is Joyce, who works in the market in Reamer. She is a wonderful woman who brings so much joy and brightness to our days, and I always see students stopping in to grab a salad and chat with Joyce. What’s blown me away is that she knows everyone’s name, wants to know about how their exam or game went, and always wishes us the best day. She is a great representation of the Union community and all our values as a small, residential liberal arts college.
But Union is also a place where you will be challenged. You will be encouraged to step outside your comfort zone to try something new, and find the intersections between fields of interest even if the connection may seem unclear. We are offered every opportunity to pursue what inspires us with the support of amazing faculty. There will be times where you’ll be challenged in a class, but there’s always someone there to cheer you on and help you learn. You will be asked to have tough conversations and will be challenged to “become comfortable with the uncomfortable” as President Harris says. You’ll leave Union well-rounded, and as a stronger person with so many valuable experiences and connections.
What has been your favorite class assignment at Union?
The term assignment in “Biochemistry: Nucleic Acids, Carbohydrates, and Lipids” because it allowed us to explore recent and current research that’s very relevant. It was a challenging and frustrating assignment at times, but was so rewarding because by the end of it I felt that it really allowed me to connect everything we were learning in the classroom to the real world.
What is your favorite place off-campus in Schenectady?
Villa Italia for dessert after a show at Proctors!