Hometown: Abington, Pennsylvania
High School: Abington Senior High School
How did you decide to come to Cairn University?
It was actually a pretty easy decision. I went to a college fair at my high school and Cairn had a booth. I came to an overnight open house, and I just felt like I was home. It felt like the right place for me and I just didn’t want to look at any other schools after that.
What activities have caused the most growth in you?
Probably my English classes. That’s where I grew the most comfortable the quickest, so I was able to sort of come out of my shell. Also having the opportunity to study abroad. That forced me to become more independent, having to figure out all the travel myself, traveling alone, figuring out finances for everything. That forced me, in a good way, to grow up and be more of a problem-solver.
You’re a co-founder of the Cairn Writing Club. How did that get started?
A friend and I had both taken Professor Dunlap’s Writing Short Stories class, and when it ended we just didn’t want to stop writing. So we decided to start the club. It started off “underground,” kind of secretive and small. Then the next semester my friend decided not to come back, so I assumed that role and decided that, if I was going to do this alone, I needed more structure to make it work. That’s when I started the process of actually becoming a recognized club. At the beginning of this year, we became an official school organization. We have grown into a real club now, which is fun.
What would you say is a unique part of Cairn culture?
I’ve been shown a lot of grace and compassion throughout these years by my professors. I think oftentimes, especially in the workplace, there’s a strict formality and compassion can kind of get lost. Our professors do a good job really showing an interest in our professional and personal lives. Some places you would be a small part of a large machine. I don’t think that Cairn thinks that way and that’s very beneficial to us.
Which of your professors has impacted you the most?
Dr. Minto. I have grown really close to her. I’ve taken so many of her classes and we share a lot of the same interests. I have also spent a lot of in-office time with her and she was my advisor for my senior thesis. She’s been very assuring. I tend to doubt myself a lot, doubting that I’m capable, and that really came to light earlier this semester with my senior project. I was overwhelmed in a meeting with her one day, and she just said, “Have you ever not finished anything? Have you ever not turned in an assignment for me? You always get things done. You will get this done. You can do this.” And it just washed over me, like, “Oh, here’s that belief in me.” It makes me believe in myself. It was what I needed at that moment. A nice moment in her little office full of books, like a little hideaway.