Fresh faces, four years later

Fresh faces, four years later

Four years ago, we asked 12 first-year students what they hoped to accomplish during their time at Skidmore. Fresh-faced, they responded with hopes of meeting new people, winning championships, and excelling in academics. WE caught up with a few of them just before Commencement to ask if their hopes came true.

 

Romeo - Freshman
Romeo - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

Romeo Makore

Harare, Zimbabwe

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? Skidmore has strong academic programs and is a very resourceful college. I like that it offers a business major in a liberal arts setting. I also like the balance between academics and life outside the classroom that Skidmore strikes.

Favorite thing here: Skidmore people are very helpful, friendly, and welcoming. The community is diverse and filled with people who have many talents. The campus is amazing. And it's a conducive environment for learning.

Hopes: I want to explore and learn new things, in addition to being a business major. Ultimately, I want to work hard, challenge myself, and give it my best shot.

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: It's really a lot of things that come together to make up this great experience—for instance, the courses, the beautiful campus. But a big part of it is the people—professors, staff, and great friends.

Hopes realized? Yes, I took music, art history, and public health and was still a business major. I spent a semester in Paris. I worked hard and had an active social life, made some incredible friends. It was great experience.

Plans: I graduated a semester early, and I am working for PricewaterhouseCoopers in their International Assignment Services business unit.

 

James - Freshman
James - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

James Rimmer

Rye, NY

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? It just jumped off the page. When I visited campus I knew it was the place for me. With excellent academics and great student organizations, Skidmore is a place where you can be whoever you want to be. The professors are not only good teachers, but also very personable; and all the people here are different, friendly, and interesting. Plus, the campus is beautiful.

Favorite thing here: How easy it is to meet people and make new friends. Nearly everyone is very outgoing and caring. Making friends is as simple as bumping into someone from your psychology class or sharing an elevator ride in Jonsson Tower with someone you haven't met. Going out for varsity sports or joining clubs is a great way to meet new people, who might end up being close friends.

Hopes: I hope to take challenging courses and excel in all my subjects. I hope to be a good rower on the crew team. I hope to find a way to balance my social life and coursework, and to figure out what I want to do with the rest of my life.

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: I have met many interesting people, and that has changed my perspectives. Even though I do not agree with the opinions of everyone I have met, listening to them has helped me become a more well rounded person.

Hopes realized? Yes, absolutely, Skidmore is a great place and the right place for me. I enjoyed all four years here and will miss it forever.

Plans: To work in sports marketing. Sport is one of the things that unify people, and I want to help the future growth of sports.

 

Allie - Freshman
Allie - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

Allie Keller

Merrick, N.Y.

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? I chose Skidmore because it is a small liberal arts school that was a couple hours' drive from home. I was especially drawn to the exercise science program and the opportunity to play NCAA Division III basketball.

Favorite thing here: Pre-orientation. It was such a great way to meet new people and get familiar with campus before everyone else arrived, which made the general orientation and the first day of classes a lot less stressful and intimidating.

Hopes: To major in exercise science and be part of a research project. Also, to have a successful basketball experience and help the team win a Liberty League championship.

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: It's the opportunities I've been able to take advantage of. I couldn't ask for a better major to study, teammates to be with, and downtown area to enjoy. I've held internships in a cardiology office and at Saratoga Hospital, which would not have been possible without the great relationship Skidmore has with the community. I have also engaged in the community, volunteering with the basketball team and serving as president of the Skidmore Athletic Advisory Committee.

Hopes realized? I achieved the goals I mentioned four years ago. I couldn't have accomplished so much without the help and guidance of my professors, teammates, and coaches. I'll have a degree in health and exercise sciences, with a minor in business. For the past two years I have assisted Professor Paul Arciero on his nutrition research and also co-led a thesis under Professor Stephen Ives. I was a two-year captain for the basketball team, and we did win the Liberty League championship this year, for the first time in school history!

Plans: After graduation, I will pursue a research assistantship in cardiology before attending graduate school. I don't really know where I will be four years from now. Wherever that may be, I know Skidmore will have influenced my decision.

 

Kojo - freshman
Kojo - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

Eleazer "Kojo" Amarteyfio

Accra, Ghana

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? The academic challenge and the fact that Skidmore is a small liberal arts college with plenty of scope for personal development. It's easy to get lost in a big school. What really made the difference, though, was "Creative Thought Matters."

Favorite thing here: Sunlit afternoons in September (it's just beautiful with the sunlight and greenery) and the memorial gardens on campus.

Hopes: I really don't know what I want to do in the future—I hope to find that out here. I hope to meet great new people and to grow in every way possible.

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: The people: Skidmore has some really talented people, and people who do things that make you think, "Only at Skidmore." Once, I had kids skiing outside my house at 1 a.m. on a weekday, and there're so many stories like that. Also the campus is beautiful in the fall, and Saratoga is a great college town.

Hopes realized? For the most part. I definitely met some great people and grew in a lot of ways. Coming in, I wasn't completely sure if Skidmore was the right place for me, but looking back it's been a great experience, and I'm happy I was able to come here.

Plans: I will be moving to New York City to work in investment banking at Barclays.

 

Layla - Freshman
Layla - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

Layla Lakos

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? Because of my first impression. What it offered that I couldn't find anywhere else was a comfortable but stimulating atmosphere, a combination of welcoming students and beautiful surroundings. In choosing Skidmore, I knew I was choosing infinite possibilities for the next four years and for my professional future.

Favorite thing here: The people, both my peers and my professors. I have not met one person who hasn't found their own unique niche. My friends are all artists—painters, actors, writers, journalists. They aspire to create and to perform in the subjects they are passionate about. Never before have I been in an environment so dedicated to celebrating the individual, yet within a flourishing, connected community.

Hopes: I want a well-rounded education incorporating both academic and cocurricular experiences. It's important to have varied sources of knowledge, especially in the highly competitive postcollege world. I don't want to concentrate only on the arts or the humanities; my aim is to give all subjects an equal opportunity.

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: My friends. If I had to give advice to anyone who hasn't yet found their place, it would be to follow your heart and your impulses, at least for a little while. Don't be afraid to let your guard down and try something new and uncomfortable. The friends I have made, the people that I surround myself with, fell into place around me through a series of choices I made to better myself in art, vulnerability, and leisure. Skidmore has helped me gain confidence in my judgment of people, situations, and myself.

Hopes realized? For the most part. I definitely met some great people and grew in a lot of ways. Coming in, I wasn't completely sure if Skidmore was the right place for me, but looking back it's been a great experience, and I'm happy I was able to come here.

Plans: I'm trying to combine craftwork, agriculture, and travel into the next year and then hopefully apply to graduate school in the Netherlands.

 

Alicia - Freshman
Alicia - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

Alicia Pierce

Rochester, N.Y.; Colombo, Sri Lanka; Suva, Fiji; Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea; Gaborone, Botswana; Dublin, Ireland; Falls Church, Va.

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? Because it felt like home. When I visited colleges, Skidmore stood out. I arrived too late for an official tour, so a student volunteered to take time out of her day to show me around. This kind of generosity was a major influence on my decision to come here. I learned that Skidmore is a place where students help each other and create an environment that feels like home.

Favorite thing here: My interesting classes and the awesome dining hall, for sure, but the big thing is the closeness that almost all the students seem to share. In my dorm, everyone is like an extended family. On the swim team we all support each other. In any building, if someone is in front of you, you can almost guarantee a door will be held open for you, with a smile. People at Skidmore genuinely care about how you are doing.

Hopes: The first thing is to decide my major. I want to discover the subject that calls out to me and pursue it with determination. Based on my major, I want to find interesting job opportunities and internships and take advantage of Skidmore's resources in order to build my future.

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: As I finish a full-time internship at the regional Board of Cooperative Education Services to complete my social work major, my favorite thing about Skidmore is its relationships and strong community connections. Through the social work department, I have worked with Amnesty International, Saratoga County Economic Opportunity Center, Saratoga Bridges, and now BOCES. These community resources have enabled me to apply my education and practice my skills in the field. The community resources are truly invaluable to students seeking field experience and volunteer opportunities.

Hopes realized? I found not only one major but two: social work and American studies, and I even added a minor in government. Over the last four years, I have used my education to find jobs and internships relevant to my interests. My internship at BOCES, with students who require alternative learning environments to mainstream public schools, has ranged from running groups with young children on the autism spectrum to assisting in individual counseling sessions of teenagers with behavioral and/or emotional difficulties. This internship is the culmination of my experiences at Skidmore and would not be possible without the help of professors and other college resources.

Plans: After a summer in Saratoga, I'll begin the master's program at New York University's Silver School of Social Work. I am confident that Skidmore has prepared me well, and I look forward to enhancing my education and starting a new chapter of my life!

 

Jasmyn - Freshman
Jasmyn - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

Jasmyn Story

Atlanta, Ga.

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? I wanted an academic institution that brought people of diverse backgrounds together under one roof. I believe that my learning experience will be enriched by the unique experiences of those around me.

Favorite thing here: I love how natural the Skidmore campus feels. I love the feeling of freedom that the campus brings. The squirrels also bring me a juvenile kind of joy.

Hopes: I hope to allow my experiences at Skidmore to morph me into the woman I dream of being.

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: The family I have built from both the student body and the Saratoga Springs community. I have been deeply nourished by the love and support that I acquired here. I am grateful that I attended a college that fostered a social environment in which this kind of community-building is possible.

Hopes realized? In four year, I have become not only what i want to be, but who I want to be. I believe that I am exactly the woman that I dreamed of being years ago.

Plans: I will be attending the University College of London for a master's in human rights. 

Imaan - Freshman
Imaan - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

Imaan Riaz

London, U.K; also Lagos, Nigeria; Miami, Fla.; and New York City

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? I wanted an environment that stimulated creative, intellectual, and progressive thought inside and outside the classroom. I think Skidmore is a great place to broaden my intellectual perspective while growing my interests and discovering new ones. The environment honors curiosity and imagination, giving the mind a trajectory with which to explore your passion.

Favorite thing here: The energy. Everyone—students and faculty—is so invested in what they do. The environment is active and always energetic, which is incredibly contagious.

Hopes: To discover how to pursue my interests. I want my time at Skidmore to benefit me in the future for whatever "career" I choose, but I also hope to acquire a creative energy that helps me grow intellectually, artistically, and socially.

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: Seeing how much all my friends and peers have grown in the last four years. The Skidmore experience is truly transformative. As graduation nears I can feel the passion, curiosity, and creativity that has been fostered in my peers, and it is exciting to know that these people will change the future.

Hopes realized? My Skidmore hopes did come true. I came here not fully knowing what I wanted to do or who I was, but I feel I've really figured out what I love to do and what type of person I aspire to be. My experience here, with the help of my professors and friends, destabilized and transformed the way I look at and interact with the world, and I think I'm a better person because of that.

Plans: : I've been the Eleanor Linder Winter '43 Intern at the Tang Museum on campus, so over the summer I will put together an exhibition as a culmination of that internship. My exhibition will examine how modern and contemporary female artists respond to their exclusion from the art-historical canon, and also what it means to be a feminist curator. The show will open in mid-August, and after that I hope to work in a contemporary art gallery or museum.

 

Nikita - Freshman
Nikita - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

Nikhita Winkler

The Republic of Namibia

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? I wanted an environment that stimulated creative, intellectual, and progressive thought inside and outside the classroom. I think Skidmore is a great place to broaden my intellectual perspective while growing my interests and discovering new ones. The environment honors curiosity and imagination, giving the mind a trajectory with which to explore your passion.

Favorite thing here: There is so much I love equally, such as the dining hall and the professors. But I feel the people here are the most wonderful. I notice what a difference friendliness has made to my experience so far; it has made me a better and friendlier person.

Hopes: I hope to find hidden potential within me. I hope to explore fields I would never have thought of exploring. I hope to find new interests and to flourish in the interests I already have. My goal is to pass well in all my subjects, create a stronger bond with my new friends, participate in Skidmore events and activities, and most important, enjoy every moment, because I have always dreamt this life I am living now at Skidmore.

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: The communities I am a part of, and how much these communities supported me and helped me grow. The dance department has literally become my home for the past year, and with all its supports, I have been able to excel in my creative endeavors. They fed me when I was hungry, understood my pain when I was injured, and pushed me to reach my full potential. My African family—the African Heritage Awareness club that I founded in my junior year—has made me a better leader. The international students and advisors who have been with me every step of the way, supporting me financially and even emotionally at times when I missed home. I am also very privileged to have collaborated with many talented people in all my creative work and to have had professors who invited me to spend holidays with their families.

Hopes realized? My Skidmore hopes came true, and I accomplished everything I wanted to. I made professional connections and lifelong friendships, started a student club, and excelled as a dance major, creating work that received outside recognition. I studied in Miami for a semester, earned an internship grant to volunteer in India, and achieved beyond the goals I set for myself.

Plans: After graduation I will be going to Bangalore, India, for six weeks to volunteer with children who have autism and cerebral palsy. Then I hope to start graduate school, either in Chicago or New York City, for a master's in movement therapy.

 

Tim - Freshman
Tim - Senior

Freshman Year - drag to see Senior year

Timothy Kim

Athens, Georgia, but I moved to Korea when I was seven and lived there until I came to Skidmore!

First-year projections

Why Skidmore? I first knew about Skidmore because of my sister, who is a senior right now. Then I found out that Skidmore was a perfect place for me. I did not know what I wanted to study, and I found out that Skidmore was the ideal place for all the "undecided" students. Moreover, I always wanted to have strong relationships with my professors, and again, Skidmore was the perfect place that provided such environment.

Favorite thing here: The classes are great. The people are awesome. The campus is beautiful. Honestly, however, D-Hall is just amazing! The food just makes me happy all the time. It's just wonderful!

Hopes: One of my biggest goals is to find out what my true interest is and get profound knowledge about that interest, not only through classes but also through the diverse experiences that Skidmore offers. I also want to build up solid relationships with people who I meet during my college life at Skidmore, and work together in future and in present to "change the world."

Four years later

Favorite thing here now: The people I met and the communities that I belong here at Skidmore are truly my favorite parts of Skidmore and that I will most miss. I am glad that I was able to develop solid relationships on this campus. My time at Skidmore was not always positive. I was tired of the lack of genuine care on campus, and I was disappointed by the non-responsive administration. However, the students, faculty, and staff who I can now call friends made my experience here at Skidmore extremely special and let me see that there are people who do care and who want to respond together as a community.

Hopes realized? Through classes and many conversations that I had, I was able to develop a more critical perspective on seeing the world and the society we live in. I am not hundred percent sure in where I will be living or working, but I hope to work towards social change with the community that I belong and also with the friends I made here at Skidmore.

Plans: After graduation I will be going back home to Korea and serve in the military for two years, because national service is required in Korea. I am a little bit nervous going to the army and many of my friends here are concerned about it too, but I am somewhat excited to go into a completely new environment. During my time in the military, I hope to develop solid friendship with the people there and reflect on the short-period of life that I have lived so far and see where and how my next step of life is leading me.

Tags: campus life, students, commencement
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