Tour Guide at Elon University
Class of 2023
Hometown: Hinsdale, IL
Major: Communication Design
Minor: Art, French
Going on the Leadershape retreat in January of 2020 was an epiphanizing time for not only my college experience, but for my life. It honestly restored my faith in humanity. As young adults, we are so often turned to face the hard realities of the world, but Leadershape reminded me of so much good that coexists with the world’s inevitable evil. Leadershape was such a special experience because of the people who went on the retreat. They were people who could have been anywhere in the world during fake break, but chose to spend a week at a camp doing leadership training with 50 like-minded strangers. These were the best kind of strangers; strangers so impassioned towards making positive change that when meshed together, we grew as a whole so unbelievably much. The group met monthly over zoom during quarantine, and still meet on campus to plan ideas for making positive change at Elon. These strangers, now 50 new friends, to me are the epitome of what Elon is. A coalition of wonderful people, in all shapes and forms. I never want to stop meeting people on campus because every person here surprises me. From Leadershape I know this is the place for people, no matter who they are, to build themselves to be their best-version, and to seek out such beauty in humanity nonetheless.
When I was 11 I actually toured Elon with my family when my older sister was visiting for herself. As an avid Harry Potter reader, I remember being obsessed with the fact that Elon's mascot was a phoenix. It's sappy, but I knew all the way back then that there was something special about Elon. When I went through the college search process myself, I kept Elon on my radar from all those years ago. When I found out that they had the major I was looking for (communication design), and a great program for it at that, I was sold and it stayed at the top of my list since then.
I love the tradition of recieving an acorn at convocation, and a sapling when we graduate. I even remember I wrote about how much I loved this concept in my application essay. I have always valued growth above all else, and the symbol of the oak tree as us students growing through our college education is really meaningful to me. I so look forward to planting my little sapling after I graduate and letting it be a symbol of my continued educational journey for all my life.