St. Lawrence was my first choice among a mix of ten other private liberal arts and Ivy League schools. I came to it from Burnt Hills, NY as a first generation college student with a plan to be chemistry major. Through the people of St. Lawrence, my grand plan took a different direction. The people of St. Lawrence – professors, advisors, staff, and students – have a way of accepting the good and giving it back. My first influential leader at SLU was economist Dr. Richardson, who recognized my knack for economics in an introductory class I was using to fulfill a distribution requirement.
Throughout my busy time at St. Lawrence, I was an athlete (cross country running), a dancer, a student athletic trainer, the PR chair for KDS, I ran the budget side of the Hill News, chaired the sign language club, was a tutor and T.A. in economics and accounting, and I traveled abroad to Costa Rica and Spain on breaks. Everyone at SLU gave me a reason to become involved in something new and meaningful. There are so many opportunities for activism and adventure at St. Lawrence that I feel like I was still discovering new options the day I graduated and still meeting people involved in something amazing that didn’t fit into my 4 years but through whom I could still learn from through their experiences, like in ice climbing or semester in the Adirondacks.
The way I saw it, each professor in the Economics department was a leader of the group, and they all led together to nurture futures. I completed an empirical senior honors thesis in economics on the returns to (higher) education in Spain with the dedicated advisory of 3-4 professors. My work went on to win the Samuel L. Johnson bibliography prize through the library, and I set off to the PhD program in economics at UCSB where I was a Eugene Cota-Robles fellow and obtained my M.A. through the program.