I chose L&C because it was evident that people had a life outside of academics. It was important for me to find a place where I could see myself not just learning, but also living, for four years.
Degree and Class Year
What three words would you use to describe L&C?
You recently participated in OPB’s NextGenRadio training program and reported on 16-year-old climate activist Adah Crandall. What was the program like? How did L&C prepare you for this experience?
NextGenRadio was an amazing experience that partnered me with a professional journalist, David Rodriguez, who was an alumnus of the program. It was an intensive week where each reporter was given the tools to tell one person’s story that relates to climate change. The program gave me a lot of tools and skills to work with audio, and also gave me the opportunity to highlight a young person with a fascinating experience. L&C prepared me for NextGen mainly through my experience working at The Log, Lewis & Clark’s award-winning student-run newspaper, which gave me a very strong journalistic background.
What’s your favorite class? Why?
My favorite class is Queer Film and Television taught by Assistant Professor Melanie Kohnen. It’s usually only offered once every three years, so make sure you take it when it’s offered. The class really resonated with me as a queer person because we are often erased in media, so the historical and cultural discussion raised in this class was refreshing. It was also very meaningful to be with people who had corollary experiences to mine.
What made you want to come to Lewis & Clark?
I wanted to come to L&C because when I visited campus, not only was it beautiful, but I could see myself going here. It was a social campus where it was evident that people had a life outside of academics. It was important for me to find a place where I could see myself not just learning, but also living for four years.
What do you like or find most interesting about your major?
In terms of the rhetoric and media studies major, there is a lot of freedom in what you can study, but also a good balance with practical skills. I love how important the field is, because how meaning is conveyed impacts every person’s life.
What do you like or find most interesting about your minor?
I love that by minoring in dance I get a different type of learning, something kinetic and in the body. It helps break up the day, giving me energy to continue tackling my workload. It’s another outlet for creativity and communication which is so fulfilling.
Where do you find your community on campus?
I find my community in many places on campus, which has made me assemble a unique support system. The Log has played a huge part in this web of people. Though it is a workplace, we spend so much time together doing meaningful work that I have created many important connections this way. Additionally, Gagged (our on-campus drag show) has played a huge part in forming this community because of how many people it touches, and how so many other queer and trans students gravitate to the space.
What advice do you have for incoming students?
My advice for incoming students is to let go, and breathe. No matter what you imagined college to be like, it will be different, and that is okay. So much changes in our life at this time, and it is important to learn to accept that, but still allow yourself to feel your emotions.
If you went on a New Student Trip with College Outdoors, how did it shape your experience as an incoming student?
I always recommend incoming students take a New Student Trip because it was one of the most formative experiences for me coming into college. My NST went to Opal Creek, a beautiful area with natural waterslides and pristine hiking trails. Unfortunately, a lot of the area has since burned down due to forest fires. However, the memories and connections I made from the trip are everlasting. Numerous of the friends I made on that trip I am still friends with today.
What’s one of the best spots on campus?
One of the best spots on campus is the comfy chairs in between the stacks in the library. The two chairs are in the DA-G section, and is one of the best spots to study on campus.
Have you had the opportunity to do research with a professor? If so, please describe the project and the experience.
I have been continuing research I did in my Rhetorical Criticism class with Visiting Assistant Professor Heather Ashley Hayes. My research focused on Lil Nas X’s cover of “Jolene” by Dolly Parton, especially in how the cover plays with genre expectations and the intersection of genre and identity. My goal is to continue working with Heather to have my work published by the end of the year. It has been such a great experience and it has been so fulfilling to feel that a professor believes in me.