Amidst preparing for my final six weeks as an undergraduate in the purple bubble, I wanted to take the time out to say thank you for all you have contributed to the education of Ephs like me. As I close out my senior year at Williams, I think back to how I stumbled upon Williams and how my subsequent place at Williams has shaped my future, a future that lies not too far ahead.
During my senior year of high school, I imagined myself as a first year at Brown University. But when that sentiment was not reciprocated in an acceptance letter, I decided to attend the Honors Program at Baruch College. I loved my fellow students and professors but after a few months, I realized I was eager to experience dorm life far away from New York City. I have lived in the Big Apple for my entire life and I saw college as a time for exploring the world. Baruch College is primarily a business school and after taking classes there, I recognized I was more interested in liberal arts. Once I mentioned to my friends that I was thinking of transferring to a liberal arts college, a plethora of suggestions flooded in. Williams was among those recommended to me and as I began to investigate which college would suit me best, repeatedly Williams reigned supreme.
I received my acceptance letter from Williams in a small, skinny envelope – the typical mark of a rejection letter. Dejected, I opened the letter and was at first, taken aback. Soon that surprise transformed into elation as I read “Congratulations.” I did not even finish the letter but instead ran and jumped all over the house screaming hysterically that I would be a newly born Eph in the Class of 2013.
I immediately accepted Williams’ offer, and then I decided to visit the campus. A bit backwards but I was so sure of my fit at Williams. Three academic years later, Williams has presented me with countless opportunities to both enrich my community and to self-reflect. As an Eph, I have been bitten with the travel bug as I strive to save the world one country at a time. I have had funded opportunities to travel to Guatemala, Spain (I also traveled to France, Italy, Prague, and Morocco), the Bahamas, Israel, Uganda and I am not done. I am currently working with various alumni and Asante Africa to set up a computer lab at Jeremy Academy, a school in Kenya founded by 2012 Bicentennial Medalist Charles Waigi ’72, and I am a finalist for a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Spain. Once I return to the states, I will continue my passion of educational policy by teaching secondary math in Boston as a member of Teach for America’s Boston Corps and then by pursuing a dual degree in law and public policy at Duke University.
Pretty soon I will walk across the stage and receive my Williams diploma. As I reflect on my time at Williams, there are so many more clubs I want to join, classes I want to enroll in, and opportunities I want to benefit from. Nevertheless, my time at Williams has been amazing. When I am not travelling and saving the world, I can be found in a multitude of places: track practice either in the Towne Fieldhouse or at Weston Field; walking President Falk’s poodle, Casey; enjoying a conversation with a fellow Eph as we both walk to the library; participating in a meeting discussing how to make community service more visible on campus; working on the Habitat for Humanity house in Pittsfield; or even leading a college tour to middle school children, to name just a few. I am a member of a many clubs and I am the Treasurer of SOCA (Students of Caribbean Ancestry) and the Community Service Coordinator for Williams Catholic. This year I also served a term as a Career Center Fellow and I am the Head Baxter Fellow of Wood Neighborhood.
When June arrives, I know it will be a bittersweet parting but I will be able to visit Williamstown any time – it helps that my brother is a sophomore! Williams has definitely provided me with a home away from home and I am so grateful I am enjoying my college experience to the fullest. When I was thinking about transferring, I wanted to attend a liberal arts college with a really great track team in the middle of nowhere so I could volunteer and meet entirely new people I would have otherwise never have met. At Williams I found the perfect match for me. I can easily say Williams and I are one.
Thank you again for your amazing contributions to my education and that of my fellow Ephs. I plan to do my part to pay it forward once I graduate!