Katie was drawn to St. Lawrence for its welcoming
community and incredible study abroad program.
During the fall of her sophomore year, Katie studied in the Adirondack
Semester, which opened her up to a way of life that strives for balance between
nature and human society. During the semester she studied under professor Mary
Hussmann, who taught Nature Writing; Through Mary’s classes Katie began to
learn the art of rendering the natural world through writing, and this
solidified her decision to become an Environmental Studies and English major. On
her return to campus, Katie moved into the Greenhouse, SLU’s low-impact living
theme house, and conducted environmentally themed programs with her housemates
for the campus community.
In the spring of her junior year, Katie traveled abroad
to Northern Ireland where she took time off from her major and focused instead
on Peace and Conflict Studies. While
there she traveled extensively through Ireland, hiked on the weekends with the
school’s hillwalking club, and was funded by a Travel Grant through CIIS to
research her family history in Counties Limerick and Cork. Her experiences abroad influenced her senior
honors thesis, which was a collection of essays based on peace and the environment
and looked at how one can find the balance between acceptance and
advocacy. With guidance from her thesis
advisor, professor Natalia Singer, and her Environmental Studies advisor, professor
Glenn Harris, Katie learned to use creative writing as a way to explore and
respond to critical questions.
Her time at St. Lawrence taught Katie the
value of persistence, creativity, and community. She is thankful for
having gone to a school
where professors genuinely care about their students, and where
community means taking care of both the people and the environment.