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Table talk: Freshmen and president share thoughts over dinner

It’s not easy being green–that is, a greenhorn, a rookie, a freshman. But this year’s first-year students have the consolation of facing the unknown in company with the College’s brand-new president, Jamienne Studley.

As a way of getting to know some new students as they settle in, and of sharing their own settling-in experiences, Studley and husband Gary Smith are hosting three dinner parties at Scribner House for a small group of freshmen during the year. Held in the fall, winter, and spring, the dinners provide a casual forum for all the newcomers to follow each other’s progress, exchange ideas and discoveries, and share feelings as they get started in their Skidmore careers.

Freshman have dinner with President Studley

The invitees were chosen, with the help of the admissions staff, not on the basis of scores or points or numbers but simply as a cross section of interesting and interested students.

• Amy Conyers, from Savannah, Ga., was principal cellist in her civic orchestra and a volunteer musician for the City Mission; she’s also interested in business and foreign languages.

• Jeffrey Parker of Winnetka, Ill., captained his state champion hockey team, has volunteered for Habitat for Humanity, and wants to focus on environmental studies.

• Eliza NaranjoMorse, a graduate of the Native American Preparatory School in New Mexico, is a beekeeper, pianist, and animator who plans to study art and education.

• Benjamin Eberle of Concord, Mass., was captain of his soccer, hockey, and sailing teams and wants to pursue writing, pottery, and teaching.

• George Comnas of Ipswich, Mass., plays jazz saxophone, has done community service in the Dominican Republic, and wants to serve in the Peace Corps or United Nations.

• Melissa Axelrod, from Cambridge, Mass., is an artist, cross-country runner, and lacrosse player who has volunteered on a Navajo reservation.

• Oren Kroll-Zeldin, from Sherman Oaks, Calif., played varsity water polo and basketball, studied in Israel, and worked as an election-campaign volunteer.

Add the hosts–a first-time college president who’s also been a law-school dean and served as a White House advisor, plus an environmental lawyer originally from the Southwest, both of whom collect pottery and wood art–and who wouldn’t enjoy having dinner with this group? Wish you could listen in? Well, Scope is offering the next best thing: excerpts of the conversations from each dinner. So watch for upcoming issues of Scope and follow the adventures of our intrepid newcomers from their very first weeks on campus to the close of classes in the spring.

—Sue Rosenberg


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