Dara Reckard

Be open, and willing to engage and change.

Dara Reckard '18



Degree and Class Year

BA ’18


Haiku, Maui, Hawai‘i


Rhetoric and Media Studies


Student Leadership and Service SMART Program (Start Making a Reader Today), Hawai‘i Club, Gaming Society, Dungeons and Dragons Social Initiative, College Outdoors, and Japan Club

Overseas study

Australia Regional Area Study

What three words would you use to describe L&C?

Exciting, Exploratory, Beautiful

What’s your favorite class? How has it expanded your knowledge?

HOW CAN YOU MAKE ME PICK ONE?! I’m picking my top three. One of them was Voice and Movement taught by Rebecca Lingafelter. It taught me the boundaries and habits in my voice and body, and pushed me to expand and change my acting abilities and the way I carry myself in day-to-day life. Another was The Art of Japanese Tea Drinking with Jan Waldmann. With the chaos that came with my life as a senior in college, the class reminded me to think of others and to breathe when everything feels overwhelming. Finally, the Australian Natural History course I took abroad in spring 2016 that was taught by a variety of field tutors. I’m not normally passionate about science, but who doesn’t want to learn about ancient flora and fauna as well as sand ecology, eucalyptus forests, rainforests, and of course the Great Barrier Reef?

What made you want to come to Lewis & Clark?

Visiting the campus really helped me see that Lewis & Clark was a good fit for me. I was able to see in person a beautiful campus that’s far away enough from the city that I don’t feel overwhelmed by it, but it is also close enough that whenever I wanted it, it was right there. Also the small classroom sizes and the emphasis on creating close relationships with professors in and outside of the classroom. Oh, and the large financial aid package helped too.

How did you choose your overseas program? What did your overseas study add to your L&C experience so far?

I ended up choosing my program because I fell in love with the idea of being able to hike and camp as a part of my everyday learning process. I didn’t go abroad for my major, my minor, or for language-intensive purposes, and I still had a blast. My overseas study experience brought me closer to some people that I now call great friends, it allowed me to learn more about the world around me, and it reminded me that learning doesn’t just take place in the classroom. My advice to those looking to choose their own program is find something you have an interest in and follow it to a country that aligns!

Describe your involvement in various offices and departments on campus (NSO, Admissions, etc.). What do you like best about working with prospective and new students?

I worked as the New Student Orientation (NSO) director in 2017, and it really reminded me of the great community and all of the resources that Lewis & Clark provides to help students feel like they belong here. Before I was director, I was a NSO leader for two years, and I loved creating and facilitating group bonding with incoming students. I worked in Admissions as a tour guide for six semesters, a student caller for two semesters, and as a lunch host for one semester. I loved sharing my stories and helping students try to figure out if Lewis & Clark College was the right fit for them. What I loved best about working with new and prospective students was the excitement they had about learning more. Whenever I was having a hard day, coming in to give an admissions tour always perked me up and reminded me how lucky and happy I was to be there and doing what I was doing, even if I was stressed sometimes.

Additionally, I was in a theatre mainstage production (Antigonick), the One Act festival, the senior thesis festival, and seven Once Upon a Weekend productions. I completed the Passport to Leadership training, and was also a note taker for Student Support Services.

What advice do you have for prospective students?

Be open, and willing to engage and to change. Also, take classes outside of your minor/major whenever you can.

What’s your favorite spot on campus?

The patio and back lawn of the Frank Manor House.

What’s your favorite thing about living in Portland?

The food carts and the rain.

What’s your best Lewis & Clark memory so far?

Swimming in bioluminescence on a deserted island off the coast of Australia.

Where do you find community on campus?

The rhetoric and media studies department, theatre department, and the Admissions office.

How do you manage stress?

Going on a hike or a walk with friends, and making lists.