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Young Alumni

Welcome to Moravian Academy’s College Corner, a special section designed to feature alumni who are currently pursuing college or post-graduate degrees. Each Q&A highlights what the alumnus/a is currently doing in his/her academic career and how his/her experience at Moravian Academy has helped them to decide what activities, projects, and majors to pursue.

Eliza Phenneger ‘18, The University of Scranton

Major: Nursing

Minor: Counseling and Human Services

Orientation Team Leader, Orientation Assistant
National Student Nurses Association
Equestrian Team
Volunteer at the Lahey Clinic

Why did you choose The University of Scranton?
I chose Scranton because of the amazing nursing program the school offers and the community that can be found around campus. Coming from Moravian, I knew I wanted to go to a small school and when I visited Scranton for the first time I immediately felt welcomed into the community and knew it was the place for me. On top of that, Scranton also offers a very strong program for nursing. There are 70 nursing students per year and I love the small size because it allows me to not only get to know the students but be able to interact with my professors on the level that I was able to at Moravian. The professors are all so friendly and approachable and are so focused on helping their students succeed. The amenities in the nursing labs are also state of the art, so it makes learning new skills so easy and helpful. I’ve made and continue to make so many connections inside and out of the nursing world, that I know will help me in my future career. Among many other reasons, the city of Scranton is the home of the show The Office, so that’s a huge plus.

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
That’s so hard to choose one, but I think getting involved with the Orientation Team at the U has been one of the best decisions that I’ve made on campus thus far. Last year, I served as an Orientation Assistant (OA’s), where I led groups of incoming first-years through orientation and helped them acclimate to campus. This year, I applied and got accepted to be the Orientation Team Leader where I am now in charge of the program, gaining leadership skills through getting to hire and train this year's team, but also professional skills and expanding my connections at Scranton by planning and organizing events for January transfer, traditional first-year orientation, and fall welcome weekend. I have met so many people through the position, and it has really helped me grow both professionally and socially. I also got my scrubs recently, and that was a huge highlight too- I am super excited to begin clinicals this semester!

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
I feel my English classes have really helped me excel at the U. Even though I am not an English major, the skills I was given in the English department at Moravian have helped me a lot. Unlike many of my classmates, I find that I am able to grasp a critical thinking question faster and am able to write essays more efficiently. I also think that because Moravian is a college prep school, I was given the foundation of good time management and how to study correctly. One of the main struggles for first-year college students is to learn how to study, but I was able to grasp the idea faster than most in my first semester of college.

What are your career aspirations?
When I graduate, I want to be a pediatric or labor and delivery nurse. I hope to work at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia on an oncology or special delivery floor. Long term, I hope to become a Nurse Practitioner and work with children and mothers.
Erin Campbell '17, University of Rochester

Major: Dual Degree: B.S. in Public Health and B.A. in Economics

Activities:  Undergraduate Research Assistant at Hill Lab, Teaching Assistant for Public Health 101 and Principles of Economics, President of Society of Undergraduate Public Health Students, Managing Editor at Journal of Undergraduate Research, Writing Tutor

Why did you choose the University of Rochester?

When I was going through the college application process, I knew that I wanted to go to a school much larger than anything I had previously experienced, but I also wanted to go to a school that offered me the flexibility to take courses in multiple disciplines. Rochester's open curriculum and lack of general education requirements, paired with its mid-size research focus turned out to be the perfect fit for me. Here, I have been able to pursue my interests in both public health and economics while still enjoying the benefits of going to a research university.

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
So far, my favorite experience of my college career has been serving as a teaching assistant for Principles of Economics, a class of about 300 students, most of whom are first-years at the University. I have learned so much from working with these students. A big part of my responsibility in this role is to hold a weekly small-group discussion of recent research in economics, which has quickly become the highlight of my week. This opportunity has allowed me to further immerse myself in the recent literature of econ and to share my passion for the topic with the students who could be my colleagues one day. 

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
Moravian's education, especially in English and Writing, has prepared me for the high expectations and standards of work at college. Although I am not majoring or minoring in English or Writing, I still find that I spend a lot of time writing, whether it's a paper, an assignment, a lab report, or an email. The writing skills that I learned at Moravian have been a continual asset to me through my college years. These skills also made my transition to college work smoother and allowed me to jump right into many challenges.

What are your career aspirations?
After graduation, I plan to gain some working experience before returning to graduate school to pursue a further degree in either Epidemiology or Applied Economics. Ultimately, I want to work in an environment where I get to do research in an area I care about that could help people to live healthier and more equitable lives. 
Julia Costacurta ‘16, Johns Hopkins University

Major: Double Major in Biomedical Engineering and Mathematics

Activities: Homewood Chamber Music Seminar, Cooking Club, Jail Tutorial, Filipino Students Association

Why did you choose Johns Hopkins University?
When I was a senior, my college decision ended up boiling down to a choice between Hopkins and a very similar institution, at least academically. I attended the accepted student weekends for each college and ended up choosing Hopkins because I liked the urban location, I enjoyed the personality of the campus, and, at a deeper level, it felt right. I know it always sounds super cheesy to pick a college based on some gut feeling you get when you’re on campus, but I think there’s some truth to be found in that feeling.

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
When I arrived at Hopkins I didn’t intend to pursue a double major, as I assumed it wouldn’t be feasible with BME as my primary major. However, I quickly fell in love with the math department here and discovered that I could fulfill both major requirements fairly easily within four years due to the AP credit I’d earned at Moravian. It’s not really a single event, but the highlight of my college career thus far has been joining the math department as a major. Since then I’ve gotten to enjoy many fascinating theoretical classes, get mentorship from faculty and graduate students in the department, and serve as an undergraduate teaching assistant.

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
I think Moravian prepared me by challenging me academically. When I got to Hopkins, I was used to working hard and seeking help when I didn’t understand the material, because that’s what I had learned to do at Moravian. These skills are an incredible advantage for your freshman year when a lot of other stressful stuff is being thrown at you. It was nice to be able to focus mostly on social and general life adjustments without having to worry too much about study habits and work ethic.

What are your career aspirations?
After graduation, I want to attend graduate school to earn a Ph.D. From there, I’m currently interested in a career in academia.
Shelby Nickerson '16, Moravian College

Major: Accounting

Minors: Management, Econ, History

Activities: Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority, Gamma Sigma Sigma Service Sorority, Amrhein Investment Club, Note-taker, Accounting Club, 26 Point Ambassador 2016-2017, United Student Government Representative 2017

Why did you choose Moravian College?
I chose Moravian College because I knew I wanted to attend a small liberal arts college, but I never envisioned attending college so close to home. Going into college, I wanted to become a high school history teacher and I knew Moravian had a program that would work for me. In fulfilling my liberal arts requirements, I took an Economics class and decided I would rather pursue a path in business. Another thing that pushed me to pick Moravian was knowing I would have the opportunity to participate in a variety of activities.
What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
The highlight of my college career has been the opportunities I’ve had to study abroad during May terms, and spring break. Due to the nature of the accounting curriculum at Moravian, I am not able to study abroad for a full semester. Having the opportunity to take three faculty lead trips to Europe has been invaluable to me.

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
Moravian Academy helped prepare me for my transition to college by providing me the tools to advocate for myself, study effectively, develop relationships with professors, and push myself. Without MA I would not have been prepared for the workload of college nor would I know how to push myself for success. I am grateful for the relationships I had with my teachers at MA, and those relationships taught me how to communicate with college professors so I can get the most out of my education.  

What are your career aspirations?
Starting out, I hope to work for a public accounting firm as I work to get my CPA. After obtaining my CPA, I hope to work towards my CFA. I am not exactly sure where I want to work in the corporate world, but I hope to go back to school for my Masters and Doctorate. Ultimately, I want to end up as a college professor.
Alex Rand '16, Emory University

MajorBusiness with a double concentration in Management Consulting and Operations
Activities: Varsity Track & Field, Residence Life, Goizueta Consulting Club, Emory Student Ambassadors, Alpha Kappa Psi Professional Fraternity

Why did you choose Emory University?
I chose Emory because for serval reasons. First, while I loved growing up in Pennsylvania, I was ready to explore a new area of the country. I knew that I that I wanted to study business and started narrowing down schools that had top business programs. Furthermore, I knew I wanted a school that had a campus and easy accesses to a city. When I decided to visit Emory, I immediately fell in love with the campus and its involved student body. My tour guide shared a story about how we applied to Emory Early Decision his senior year of high school and was denied. Following a gap year, he reapplied to Emory and was actually waitlisted. Finally, after speaking with his admissions counselor he was granted a spot and immediately took it. I was inspired by his determination to be at Emory, and ultimately inspired to apply Early Decision to Emory my senior year.

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
One of my favorite Emory memories has been traveling with our team for Track. For our conference meet my freshman year, we flew to compete in Chicago. While we did not have a tremendous amount of time to explore the city, we were granted one hour to explore the city on our own. My teammates and I desperately wanted to see the Chicago’s Cloud Gate before our departure and ran over two miles dodging and weaving through people and streets to see the structure. We were able to see the structure, take pictures, and make it back to our bus despite the limited amount of time, which made this memory all the more exciting.

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
As a student at Moravian, I constantly heard about well I would be prepared for college, and now as a third-year student, there is no doubt in my mind that Moravian helped in my success. On an academic level, Moravian consistently challenges students in all classes and the homework loads are definitely consistent with those at the collegiate level. Additionally, Moravian challenged me to explore areas in the arts, athletics, and more, which played a significant role in my desire to get involved early at the collegiate level.

What are your career aspirations?
Following my graduation, I am planning to work full time at a consulting firm most likely in the Atlanta area. I am excited by the opportunity to travel and work across many industries with a variety of clientele. Long term, I would love to start my own business.
Adrianna DiMarco '16, Lafayette College
Major: Double major Art History and Italian Studies
Minor: Economics 
Activities: President and co-founder of Italian Club,  Lafayette Student Alumni Council, tour guide with Lafayette College Ambassador Program, community service group Alpha Phi Omega (APO), Tri Delta sorority, Arts Society 
Why did you choose Lafayette College?
I first started creating my college application list by narrowing my list by size and location. I knew I wanted to stay local and go to a small college. This would be a good transition after graduating from Moravian with a class size of around 80 students. I chose Lafayette because I wasn't sure what I wanted to study when I graduated high school. I knew at a liberal arts college I could change my major and take classes I found interesting. Lafayette also has a strong sense of community like Moravian Academy does. I see familiar faces when I walk around campus. Their student involvement appealed to me too and I have had the opportunity to join many clubs and organizations. 
Highlight of college career:
What I like best about Lafayette is the opportunities it has given me. I have met many people through my involvement in clubs on campus. I also have never been abroad before going to Lafayette. I now have studied abroad 3 times in Italy during the interim breaks through the school and will be going again this summer to finish my capstone class of my Italian Studies major. 
How did Moravian prepare you?
Moravian helped me transition to college by teaching me how to manage my time and study effectively. I played several sports in high school, was involved in various clubs, and took AP classes. Time management is highly important during college. Moravian also gave me the confidence to speak up and ask questions in class. My teachers at Moravian were excellent mentors and guided me well. I received a well-rounded education at Moravian where I was able to discover my strengths. I will always be grateful to Moravian for giving me the skills necessary for a successful college transition. 
Career aspirations:
After I graduate I hope to combine my various fields of study of Art History, Italian Studies, and Economics in the workplace. My goal would be to work for an Italian company perhaps dealing with imports and exports, which would allow me to travel to Italy. I am also thinking about using my art history degree to work for an art auction company such as Sotheby's. Next semester I am taking an education class and I might consider teaching as a profession. I have various possibilities of opportunities that lie ahead of me with my degree.
Maria Biery ’14, University of Pennsylvania
Major: Political Science
Minor: Music and journalistic writing 
Activities: Writer for The Statesman political magazine; social media director and writer for the Odyssey at UPenn; Penn Government and Politics Association
Why did you choose University of Pennsylvania?
“Penn gave me an enormous opportunity. They accepted me to their university through a full-tuition and expense Questbridge Scholarship. Of course I could not turn down this amazing chance at a great education. Another feature that attracted me to Penn was the fact that students are really encouraged to ask the ‘big’ questions and explore what they want and can do through the Core Curriculum. Not knowing what career path I wanted to take, this was definitely a defining feature that Penn had to offer.”

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“In an attempt to get more involved with politics, I joined The Statesman political magazine halfway through my freshman year. Little did I know that joining the publication would open up countless doors and opportunities for me. This summer I went to the Collegiate Network Editor’s Conference in Bryn Mawr, PA where I met many professionals who were incredibly willing to help me in my endeavors. It was also at this conference that I realized journalism was my true calling. I was very involved with writing at Penn, but I did not think that it could be a serious career path. That thinking quickly changed though in a matter of days. I now plan on writing occasionally for Red Alert Politics, a national political news outlet, and interning with The Daily Caller next summer in Washington, DC. The Statesman has given my life a solid direction, which is why it has been the greatest experience I’ve had at Penn thus far.”

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“I cannot express how well Moravian Academy prepares their students for college. Not only did I feel ready academically, but I felt that I was easily able to adapt to the social environment as well. For me, the writing skills that Moravian taught were crucial. I do not believe I would be doing what I am now if I had not gone to Moravian Academy in my junior year of high school because it was there that I developed my love for writing. I am forever grateful to the teachers who helped and guided me during my time at Moravian. My life would not have been the same.”

What are your career aspirations?
“I hope to become a political journalist in the future. Although this is a relatively new idea of mine, I feel that it is what I was meant to do. In one of my college essays, I expressed that the reason I wanted to get into politics was so that I could change the world even if it was in the smallest way. Journalism and writing gives me that power. The power to expose the truth leads to change.”
Priya Atiyeh '14, Boston College

Major: Political Science 
Minor: International Studies
Student Admissions Program Member: Tour guide, greeter, caller of accepted students for telethons, weekly blog writer for media outreach efforts
Generation Citizen Member: Work with a team of students to promote high impact action civics education and build organizational infrastructure to allow for national impact in local high schools
First Year Service Program Leader: Accepted from a competitive pool of applicants to lead a freshman service group and conduct weekly reflection sections in order to allow the freshman to grow from their service experiences
Relay for Life Volunteer: Created a floor team and earned Bronze Level for the 
National Relay for Life Individual Fundraising Club, raised money and planned events to end cancer
Lean In Member: Carrying Sheryl Sandberg’s mission to empower individuals and push them to achieve their full potential, Lean In provides Circles to discuss issues regarding women empowerment and cultivate skills that are critical for success like negotiating and managing difficult conversations
Backgrounds Member: Participate in discussions surrounding race, gender, and social issues
Women in Business Member: An organization, network and community of undergraduate female students dedicated to their empowerment and education with a strong commitment to the growth and expansion of professional and personal opportunities for its members, with a focus on business, leadership, and female empowerment and innovation
Bellarmine Law Society Member: Explore various areas of law including business law, international law and criminal law
Intramural Sports: Tennis, soccer, volleyball and basketball
Why did you choose Boston College?
“Boston College is an embodiment of everything I wanted in a college from rigorous academics to contagious school spirit. I was eager to attend football games, dress in maroon and gold from head to toe, and cheer as loud as I can with my friends. After touring this beautiful campus and meeting the well-rounded student body who strive to make a difference in the world, I knew that this was the place for me. Boston College is a Jesuit university whose mission is to ‘educate a new generation of leaders—men and women who will be capable of shaping the future with vision, justice and charity.’ At what other university do students compete to participate in community service clubs? Almost every student at Boston College is at least in one community service-oriented club, which is rare for a university student. It is perfectly located in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, providing the student body with easy access to the marvelous city of Boston and a community, campus-feel. My developing leadership skills, passion for community service, academic curiosity about international issues, and desire to be a dynamic member of classroom and campus activities mesh perfectly with BC’s academic and extracurricular offerings.”

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?

“It is hard to choose one highlight because my freshman year has been amazing. I was lucky enough to have the most welcoming and fun floor from the start. The girls on my floor made the transition to college so easy because everyone was so eager to get to know each other. Our RAs initiated “The Open Door Challenge,” meaning that whenever they would see our dorm room doors open when we were in them, we would get a sticker. I attribute the fact that my floor was so close to this competition because people would just walk in one another’s room and get to know them, thus creating a formidable bond. Our floor of 75 girls was extremely close and would host floor-wide events without the RA’s involvement. We truly loved being with one another and coming back to our rooms so that we all could share our experiences of the day and enjoy great company. I lived on Gonzaga 3, which we called G3, and we would all run around campus saying, ‘G3, Place to Be.’ I’m lucky to have made such close friends that I am living with next year and have visited and stayed in touch with all summer.”

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?

“I was lucky enough to attend Moravian Academy since pre-kindergarten and MA could not have prepared me better. Academically, I was able to keep up with reading assigned by professors, write a wide array of essay types and lengths with ease, and take higher-level classes because of the preparation MA classes gave me during AP classes. More importantly, as a student at MA, I was taught from an early age to balance my academics, athletics, community service, and all other endeavors. Coming to college, I was able to apply these sound time management skills MA instilled in me. Moravian Academy, similar to Boston College, places an emphasis on community service, so it was natural for me to partake in some form of community service. MA helped me cultivate a love for education through the wide range of experiences and opportunities it gave me.”

What are your career aspirations?
“My major will help me to cultivate this passion and become an advocate for others who may not have the resources to stand up for themselves. I aspire to use my Jesuit education to become a human rights lawyer, utilizing my compassion for others and drive to prompt social change.”
Alexander Battisti ’14, Lafayette College

Major: Economics (with a Financial Certificate) & Spanish
Minor: Art
Activities: Crew Team, Investment Club, College Republicans, Officer of No Labels, President & Founder of Lafayette College Car Club, Orientation Leader
Why did you choose Lafayette College?
“I chose to attend Lafayette College for a number of reasons. As a third generation student at both Moravian and Lafayette, I was attracted to the familiarity, comfort of home, and sense of family that Lafayette offered. I was also drawn to the small size, beautiful campus, rivalry history, and the prospect of being involved in the very active Greek life on campus. What moved me to reject other college acceptances and not pursue other wait list options was their offer of the Marquis Scholarship, a merit-based scholarship offered to the top 10% of each incoming class, totaling $100,000."

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“I had been interested in rowing throughout my entire high school career, but the opportunities in the Lehigh Valley are extremely limited. Having the opportunity to join the Crew Team with relative ease is not something that one can do at a larger school, and this sense of accessibility is something that a Moravian graduate will no doubt be accustomed to. Being able to make the team and row in The Head of the Schuykill Regatta, Frostbite Regatta, and Knecht Cup was no doubt the highlight of my college career thus far.”
How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“Smaller class sizes, the vast intelligence of the faculty, and the overall passion to learn that the student body and community possesses will prepare any Moravian graduate for the academic challenges that his or her college will present. For me, I attribute my more than adequate preparation for Lafayette to my class. Having attended Moravian since kindergarten, I was able to quite literally grow up with some of the brightest, most-driven, and academically excellent peers I have ever known. They instilled in me a healthy sense of motivation and academic competition that I have taken with me to college, and I owe my academic standing in no small part to them.”
What are your career aspirations?
“I would like to enter the field of finance after graduation and go on to pursue my MBA. While I am not certain what sector of finance it is that I will enter, I am currently most interested in pursuing investment banking.”
Finn Barrett '13, Washington and Lee University

Major: Accounting and Business Administration
Minor: East Asian Studies
Activities: Associate Director of Williams Investment Society, Sigma Chi Fraternity, WLUR 91.5 Campus Radio Station, Traveller Safe Ride Program, Squash Club

Why did you choose Washington and Lee University?
“I chose Washington and Lee for its strong sense of community and also because it is one of the few liberal arts colleges that also has an undergraduate business school. I attended Moravian from pre-kindergarten until my senior year, so I wanted to go to a college that would also have a strong and caring community, a rich history, and a certain level of friendliness in the student body. I was lucky enough to find Washington and Lee which fit all of these criteria and more. The school has a student-run honor system which guides student life and creates a student culture that is very similar to what I experienced at Moravian. I was also attracted to the combination of a business school and liberal arts college that exists at Washington and Lee. Coming from Moravian, I wanted to attend a college that was on the smaller size and had small classes where I could develop meaningful relationships with my professors. Since I also wanted to major in business, I found it somewhat difficult to find a school that had both the intimate feel I desired and also a well-respected business school. Washington and Lee fell into this intersection and turned out to be the perfect fit for my college education and personal growth.”

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“My involvement in the Williams Investment Society has been one of my favorite parts of college so far. It is a student-run investment organization which is responsible for investing $10 million of the university’s endowment in equity securities. I had always been interested in finance, a passion I was able to explore and solidify during economics classes with Mr. Eckman during my senior year at Moravian. It has been great to pursue my passion for finance and investing with real money and real responsibility, and this has become especially rewarding since I was named an associate director of the group this past fall. Overall, I have really enjoyed the ability to involve myself in a variety of organizations and activities while at school—truly a benefit of the liberal arts education.”

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“Moravian prepared me well for school, both inside and outside the classroom. Moravian’s rigorous academics helped prepare me for nearly any challenge in my coursework that I’ve experienced in college. The focus on discussion and analytical thinking in many of my high school classes helped to build a solid foundation for my coursework at Washington and Lee, where most of my classes are seminar-based. At Moravian, almost every student is involved in a multitude of activities. This prepared me well for college where I find myself involved in a variety of extracurricular activities on and off campus. Without my education at Moravian I do not believe I would be as well equipped for college.”

What are your career aspirations?
“I hope to work in investment banking after my graduation. I will be pursuing this aspiration with an internship at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in their equity capital markets group this summer.”
Deniz Citak ’13, Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University 

Major/Minor: Regional & Comparative Studies: Middle East & Latin America
Activities: The Caravel (International Affairs Newspaper); Turkish Students Association

Why did you choose Georgetown University?
“I started freshman year at Lehigh University thinking I wanted to study business, but quickly realized my passion was international relations and history. Spending another year in Bethlehem also made me realize I was a city person and sought adventure, so I looked into transferring. I applied to Georgetown because it fit the city criteria and is one of the best schools in the world for international studies.”

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“I’ve enjoyed the variety of people I have been able to meet and the opportunities that being in DC brings. Most of my friends are from different countries, from places as close as Mexico to as far away as Iran, and this has given me the chance to understand different cultures, hear incredible stories, and basically have a place to stay almost anywhere I want to go. The city of Washington has so many offerings from museums to concerts to restaurants and there is always something going on if you have time for it. Even on campus we get incredible speakers such as Jon Stewart, Tony Blair, and the Clintons.”   

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“I honestly did not have to change my study habits; however, I did need to get used to studying much longer than normal. I learned time management junior year when I was taking six classes, three of which were AP. Other than that, Moravian truly prepared me to write clearly and eloquently. My major constantly has me reading and writing and without Moravian I would have had a lot of trouble getting used to this type of competitive academic atmosphere.”

What are your career aspirations?
“I have not decided on a specific career, but my long-term goal is to work in diplomacy at the United Nations. Short term, I’m considering careers in international journalism, government consultancy, or the State Department.”
Ryan J. Peslis ‘15, Lafayette College

Mathematics and Economics (with a Financial Certificate)
Computational Methods

Men’s Soccer
Athletes Care
Delta Kappa Epsilon Fraternity
Investment Club

Why did you choose Lafayette College?
I chose Lafayette College because I was looking for a smaller sized liberal arts school that also had Division 1 athletics. In addition to this, I wanted the ability to take many different classes outside my major, as well as be able to take a strong core curriculum within mathematics and economics. Location wise, it is not only incredibly convenient to move in and out, but also it’s a little over an hour to NYC and Philly.

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?

In addition to participating in the life of the campus, the highlight of my college career thus far has been participating in the Lafayette- Lehigh rivalry and attending the football game the last three years. There’s nothing better than to see your entire community come together to support the same cause.

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?

Moravian Academy provided me with a classroom that pushed me to grow as a student and follow my interests. The professors really cared about me and I always felt they wanted what was best for me.

What are your career aspirations?

I always knew I was a strong math student and had an interest in economics. This lead me to learn about the career of actuarial science, which allows me to apply my mathematical skills in an economic context. After interning as a life actuary at National Life Group last summer, I loved my work and knew I wanted to continue down this path. I am excited to continue my goal as I will begin an internship next summer with PricewaterhouseCoopers as an actuarial consultant.
Tim Wolak '15, Lehigh University

Double major: 
Finance and Economics
Activities: Previously involved with the varsity golf team; currently an active member of the Sigma Chi fraternity; heavily involved in the Investment Management Group

Why did you choose Lehigh?
"My college search process was slightly different from most in the sense that I was looking for a school at which I could potentially play golf, so that narrowed down my list of schools. I selected Lehigh for a number of reasons. First, I wanted to attend a university with a reputable business school as well as an active alumni network that would help me get my career off the ground and the Rauch Business School does exactly that. I also wanted a school that had a lot of school spirit; after starting the MA Spirit Club I needed a university that had plenty of school pride. Lastly, I wanted to go to a smaller school. I wanted to go to a place where I could not only get involved but make an impact on the campus and the people I would be working with and Lehigh gave me the perfect opportunity to do that."

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
"The highlight of my college career has to be joining Sigma Chi. Going into Lehigh I never expected to join a fraternity, I thought I would be involved with just the members of the golf team. After a few months of thinking it over I decided to join and I haven’t looked back. Having a house of 65 brothers who are pushing me everyday to be a better person and challenging me to do more is exactly what I needed at Lehigh. If it wasn’t for the fraternity I wouldn’t have decided to do a double major, join my investment group, or apply to study abroad. Living with and being around friends who are from all over the world has definitely helped to broaden my perspective on the world."
How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
"Looking back on my time at Moravian the thing that prepared me the most was essentially just good study habits. It was shocking to get to Lehigh and meet other students who were at the top of their class in high school who didn’t know how to study properly. Although studying in high school and studying in college are quite different, you learn certain study habits at Moravian Academy that other schools just don’t teach. I find that other students need to spend significantly more time in the library to accomplish the same amount of work that I can using techniques I learned at the Upper School."
What are your career aspirations?
"My current career aspiration is to go into investment banking. I’m not entirely sure what I want to focus on in the world of investment banking but I love studying market trends and macroeconomic variables. I find trading to be exceptionally interesting."

Kareem Rabbat '16, University of Pittsburgh
Environmental Engineering with a certificate in Engineering for Humanity
Activities: Engineers for a Sustainable World, Keep it Real, The Aquaponics Project, The Green Fund Advisory Board
Why did you choose the University of Pittsburgh?
I chose to attend the University of Pittsburgh because of the amazing opportunities that the city provides. I had never been to Pittsburgh until I came for an admitted students day where I instantly fell in love with the city and its people. Everyone was so kind to me and the city had such a unique culture. I found that Pittsburgh reminded me of home, coming from the old steel town of Bethlehem. I was also unsure of what I wanted to study at the time of choosing a college, and by choosing Pitt I ensured that I had a wide range of accredited programs to choose from.

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
I have done so much in my college career it is difficult to pick one highlight. However, I really enjoy the opportunity to tutor a Somali-Bantu on a weekly basis with the Keep it Real organization. It’s a great opportunity to play with the kids, help them with their homework and connect with people. Another highlight of my college career was winning Ford’s C3 competition in Dearborn Michigan where my team and I won $65,000 to fund the design and construction of an anaerobic digester for our startup Ecotone Renewables.

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
My time at Moravian prepared me for the college workload, while many of my friends struggled to find time to complete assignments and meet deadlines I was finishing assignments early because of the time management skills I learned at Moravian. In addition, I felt as though my writing skills were better than that of my classmates. Lastly and most importantly Moravian sparked a desire and a love of learning in my which fuels my never-ending pursuit of knowledge in college and beyond.

What are your career aspirations?
After I graduate from The University of Pittsburgh, I plan to serve in the Peace Corps and then go to grad school and get a Ph.D. I would like to study a combination of Biological systems, Material Science Engineering, and Electrical Engineering. With my Ph.D., I would like to work in sustainable development of third-world nations and do research. 
Giselle Ferguson, Class of 2015, College of William and Mary

Major: Psychology
Classical Civilization

Psychology Research,  

Why did you choose William and Mary?
Both of my parents attended this school, and most summers my family would visit Colonial Williamsburg while visiting family, so William and Mary’s campus and surrounding town were already pretty familiar to me. This familiarity, plus the fact that its location in Colonial Williamsburg reminded me a lot of attending Moravian’s Lower and Middle Schools in Historic Bethlehem, pushed me to choose William and Mary over the other comparable schools to which I’d been accepted.

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?

Although I have been working in one of my professor’s psychology labs since I was a freshman, this year I finally have to opportunity to design and run a study of my own. Designing a study I was really interested in, going through that process, and learning how research is actually done in my field is exciting.

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
Academically, the experience of having Moravian’s workload prepared me very well for the amount of work I’d have to do in college. Coming into college, I was not overwhelmed at all by my assignments, and I found that I also knew better than many of my classmates how to manage my time, portion out my work, and avoid procrastinating.
Carly Zaladonis, MA Class of 2015, Emory University Class of 2019

Biology and Human Health (Double Major)

Biology Lab Teaching Assistant, Orientation Leader, Undergraduate Research Assistant, Kappa Alpha Theta Sorority, Emory Student Ambassador, Emory Pipeline Initiative (Mentorship program with Atlanta High School students), Residence Hall Association

Why did you choose Emory University?
Emory University was my first choice school for many reasons. While I knew I wanted to apply to an institution that would push me on many levels, I feared a competitive environment.  Emory offered exceptional academics and research opportunities in a non-cut throat environment. Another reason I was drawn to Emory was its location in Atlanta, GA which I was interested in due to the opportunities provided living close to a city, southern climate, and accessibility to the Lehigh Valley (there’s a direct flight from ABE every day). Lastly, and most importantly, when I visited Emory’s campus I felt at home and that I really identified with the student body.

If I had to repeat the college process, I wouldn’t change my decision and would apply Early Decision again!

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?

The highlight of my Emory experience has been participating in undergraduate research for credit at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.  For the past six months, my mentor and I have been examining the effect of electrical-stimulation on exosomes isolated from neonatal and child cardiac progenitor cells (CPCs). Our ultimate research goal is to identify if electrical-stimulation of CPCs can mediate restoration of cardiac function in an animal model of right-ventricular heart failure.

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?

My time at Moravian Academy favorably prepared me for college.  Specifically, I found that compared to many of my classmates, I thrived in terms of time management, writing skills, and confidence in the classroom.  During my time at Moravian, I made many close relationships with my teachers, and such interpersonal skills have served to be an invaluable skill at Emory.  I firmly believe that being able to ask for help and create a relationship with professors in college (especially in larger lecture science classes) is a recipe for success, and the faculty at Moravian definitely helped me cultivate the confidence to so.  

What are your career aspirations?

My career aspiration is to become a doctor of medicine specializing in oncology or dermatology.  I want to tie in my strong research background with my career as a medical practitioner to have a multi-faceted relationship with my field.
Stefan Joseph ’15, Cornell University

Major/Minor: Computer Science Major, Game Design Minor

Love Knows No Bounds – Furniture Redistribution Volunteer
Cornell Cinema – Volunteer Usher

Why did you choose Cornell University?
Having already recognized my interest in gaming, I wanted to make sure I could get some exposure to it during my undergraduate years. As such, I searched for schools that not only had strong Computer Science programs but also offered courses in Game Design. Cornell fit this bill and also matched the rest of my college criteria: a well-defined campus environment; a reasonable, yet not an inconvenient distance from home; and a wide-range of extraneous course offerings for me to explore.

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
During the spring semester of my sophomore year, I took my first course dealing heavily with gaming: Introduction to Computer Game Architecture. I had been waiting for that opportunity since I had chosen Cornell in high school and the course did not disappoint. I spent that semester working with five other students to create our own game, complete with original characters, levels, and music. We even underwent the continual process of formally documenting our concepts and progress, as would be done in the industry. I left that course with five new friends, valuable teamwork experience, greater insight into game development, and a truly fun game. We were even able to enter our final product into the 2017 Boston Indie Games Festival and become finalists in the Student Games category.

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
Time management is often cited as the most difficult skill to learn in college for good reason. In college, students are not policed to adhere to deadlines; students are expected to get their work done or face the consequences. As such, college success demands discipline in an environment that essentially enables laziness. Beyond time management, what students really need to master is self-management, which Moravian introduces by challenging students academically in a college-like setting. This takes shape in the decisions Moravian students make every day, whether it is deciding when and how to start studying for an exam or even choosing how to spend a free period. This training prepared me for college the most, as I could evaluate my own habits at Moravian and work to improve them in anticipation of similar trials in college.

What are your career aspirations?
I want to put my programming skills to work making video games, constructing fun and interesting experiences for people to enjoy. I hope to also bring some of my own ideas for games to life using this powerful interactive media.
Jeffrey B. Brown ’15, Tufts University
Major/Minor: Mechanical Engineering Major, Finance & Mathematics Minor
Leonard Carmichael Society - Play Pals, Animal Aid
Men’s Lacrosse
Delta Tau Delta Fraternity
Why did you choose Tufts University?
“A big reason why I chose Tufts was because it was a smaller-sized liberal arts school that offered an engineering curriculum. I knew that I wanted to do engineering at a small school, but I wanted the opportunity to take non-engineering classes and interact with non-engineering students. Tufts is also in an ideal location—about 20 minutes outside of Boston—so it is not right in the city, but the city is easily accessible. Finally, I jelled with the atmosphere on campus and liked the social and athletic opportunities Tufts offered.”
What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“The highlight of my college career so far was a spontaneous 3:00 a.m. trip to the only 24/7 diner in Boston with a couple of my friends.”
How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“Moravian Academy taught me the ways I can most effectively learn material, to manage my time, to be a leader, and social skills. These skills have been invaluable to my success in college thus far.”
What are your career aspirations?
“I would like to have a career in engineering project management or in finance.”
Madison Sheetz '14, Drew University
Major/Minor: BA Sociology, minors in Film, Media, and Communication Studies & French
Activities: “I am a two-sport student athlete at Drew University. I am proud to be a NCAA Division III athlete and play both field hockey and softball. I am also involved in the intramural basketball program at Drew and play on a co-ed team. I have an on campus job, as well, in the athletic department.”

Why did you choose Drew University?
“I was looking for a small liberal arts college where I could balance academics and athletics. I knew that I wanted to move away from home, but not too far, and the hour to Drew University was perfect! Once I visited Drew, I liked the size of the school and the opportunities that awaited me there.”

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“The highlight of my college career so far, is having the opportunity to be a DIII student athlete, and to build so many valuable friendships at Drew.”

How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“My time at Moravian Academy prepared me very well academically for college. I was prepared for the large amount of work and the demands of a being a student athlete. Having attended Moravian since the first grade, I learned many important life skills that helped make my transition to college fairly easy. The valuable skills of time management and organization have been the most beneficial to me at Drew.”
What are your career aspirations?
“After graduation, I would like to pursue a career in the field of film, media, and communications. I have always aspired to do something with film/photography ever since high school.”
Andie Burns ’14, Millikin University

BFA Stage Management, Communication Minor

Production Manager, Pipe Dreams Studio Theatre (2015-2017)
First Year Experience Mentor, Millikin University (2015 and 2017)
Greek Life Ambassador, Millikin University (2016-2017)
Videographer, Millikin School of Theatre and Dance (2014-2018)
Script Library Manager, Millikin School of Theatre and Dance (2015-2018)
Active Member/PACE Chair/Greek Week Chair, Alpha Chi Omega
Lifetime Member, Alpha Psi Omega
President, Physical Graffiti Campus Hip-Hop Dance Team (Spring 2017)
Student Representative, Student Advisory Council (2016-2017)
Administrative Support and Videographer, Shakespeare Corrected*
(Spring 2017)
*Shakespeare Corrected is the only program in the nation that involves undergrads in the therapeutic process of working with offenders in a correctional center to produce a Shakespeare play
Why did you choose Millikin University?
“I picked Millikin on April 30th, which is the day before we had to decide our collegiate fates and ultimately it came down to Millikin v. Muhlenberg. At the time, I had an internship at Muhlenberg for the summer and I felt really comfortable going there. However, I decided life was too short to go to a school I was already comfortable at so I moved 14 hours away to really challenge myself personally and professionally. Millikin has a very strong program that is growing into one of the best collegiate theater programs in the nation and I really wanted to be a part of putting this random school in Decatur, IL on the map.”
What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“The highlight has been getting to production manage for our student-run theater company, Pipe Dreams Studio Theatre. PDST was the first theater experience I had at Millikin and I knew I wanted to give back to the company and help it grow. Consequently, I interviewed for the Production Manager position as a freshman. I ended up not getting it for the training semester, but the student who did get the job dropped at the end of her training so I got called in. I ended up not having my training semester under the last Production Manager, so I literally just had to sink or swim. I could not imagine a better way to get an irreplaceable theater education than this opportunity. I have gotten countless second and third round interviews and job offers because of this position and it has made my collegiate education that much more valuable.”
How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“Moravian Academy absolutely prepared me time-management wise. I understood my needs academically before getting to school and I knew how to work in order to give my best academic performance. Also, since Millikin is a smaller school I already knew how to communicate well with my professors and make the most out of those connections. Overall, I had an excellent academic foundation that a lot of my peers did not have prior to Millikin. My academic discipline learned at Moravian Academy afforded me countless opportunities and I was absolutely prepared to continue into higher education.”
What are your career aspirations?
“My plans for post graduation are to work on National Tours as a Production Stage Manager for a few years and then ultimately end up in New York working on brand new workshopping musicals tracked for Broadway.”
Marlee Senderowitz ’14, Georgia Institute of Technology
Major: Materials Science and Engineering, with a concentration in polymer and fiber materials, and a certificate in business
Activities: Zeta Tau Alpha sorority; Campus Manager at University Tees (a nationwide custom apparel printing company); Student Alumni Association; Freshman Council

Why did you choose Georgia Institute of Technology?
“I knew I wanted to go to a school somewhere outside of and warmer than Pennsylvania to study engineering. When I originally started my college search, I had honestly never heard of Georgia Tech, despite its prestigious engineering program. I actually ended up applying on a whim a few days prior to the deadline, as it fit my vague college criteria. I got rejected by my top choice school and made the decision to accept Georgia Tech’s as it offered the best engineering program (even compared to my top choice) and I could transfer if I didn’t end up liking it. I soon realized Georgia Tech was truly the best decision. While it’s definitely an academically challenging school as expected, I love that it’s so different from what I was used to, especially in terms of location and size. These aspects, along with many others, have made me much more independent and emotionally and academically mature than if I would have stayed close to home.”

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“One thing that’s unique about Georgia Tech is its extensive study abroad programs all over the world. While most schools make it difficult for engineering majors to take meaningful classes abroad this is definitely not the case at Tech! After my freshman year, I went on a summer exchange to Hong Kong where I studied at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. I chose not to do a faculty led program so I was completely on my own. What I like most about traveling is that it’s real life problem solving. If you get lost, you have to figure it out on your own, without the help of the Internet, Google translate, or your parents. Both the distance from home and the language barrier force you to be much more independent and have much more meaningful experiences. I was able to explore Hong Kong and other amazing destinations such as Singapore, Macau, Thailand, and Vietnam, while also receiving class credit. Additionally, I plan on studying abroad again next summer at Georgia Tech’s campus in Lorraine, France.”
How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“While Moravian Academy has definitely prepared me academically for the rigor of an engineering course load, one of the most valuable lessons I learned from Moravian is to not be afraid to ask for help. While many of my peers are hesitant to meet teachers outside of the classroom, that is not the case for me. This comfort in reaching out has helped me further my understanding in many subjects and has fostered valuable relationships with teachers.”

What are your career aspirations?
“As a lover of infomercials, it has always been a dream of mine to invent an as seen on TV product. As a result, I would like to pursue a career in research and development for consumer products, as I believe this will give me the ability to combine my creativity and love of science. After interning for Gulfstream Aerospace last summer, I was reassured aerospace was not a field I wanted to pursue. This also solidified my desire to work with consumer products, as I didn’t like the idea that my efforts in creating multi-million dollar products would never be seen, let alone enjoyed, by the majority of the world. While I am grateful for the experience and insight I gained at Gulfstream, I am excited to begin my five-month internship this summer with Unilever, the world’s largest consumer product company, as a packaging engineer.”
Jasmine Sun '14, Swarthmore College

Major: Neuroscience
Activities: Research assistant in psychology lab; volunteer in pre-med hospice program; dean’s tutor for psychology; Principal Chair of second violins in orchestra and member of chamber music groups; Sigma Xi Scientific Research Society

Why did you choose Swarthmore College?
“I chose Swarthmore College because of its reputation for academic rigor, its intimate atmosphere, and its proximity to Philadelphia. I knew that going to Swarthmore would challenge me both in and out of the classroom and I was looking forward to growing as a student and as a member of society. I loved the small class sizes and how approachable, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable the professors were. Being close to Philadelphia also meant that I could explore the city and have access to new experiences.”

What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“I have had many challenging and rewarding experiences at Swarthmore. For three years, I have conducted neuroscience research, using a rodent model of PTSD to study the mechanisms underlying abnormal fear memory and the effectiveness of various methods of treatment. We have discovered some interesting findings and I continuously strive to keep in mind the clinical implications of my work. The ultimate purpose of our daily experiments is to provide a viable treatment for people suffering from PTSD and what we discover in the laboratory has the potential to improve the lives of patients.”
How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“Moravian Academy was extraordinary at preparing me for college. Through demanding classes and inspiring teachers, Moravian gave me a strong work ethic and love for learning that I have carried with me throughout my days at Swarthmore. Moravian’s emphasis on community service and camaraderie has also taught me the importance of compassion and open-mindedness. The community and support at Moravian has been amazing and I wouldn’t be the same person today without it.”
What are your career aspirations?
“As a neuroscience major pursuing the pre-med track, I am hoping to go to medical school. My love of science and my desire to help people has motivated me to become a doctor.”
Emily Benn ’13, The George Washington University
Double major: English & Human Services and Social Justice
Activities: Alpha Phi Omega, Theta Chi (co-ed community service fraternity); WRGW radio station; GW Writing Center consultant; Education Programming intern at 826DC

Why did you choose
The George Washington University?
“I chose GW because I wanted to be at a school that emphasized service work. I originally entered the university thinking I wanted to study political science, but quickly realized I was more interested in non-profit work, writing, and education. Regardless of my major, I knew the school’s DC location would afford me many chances to network and intern in whatever field of study I chose to pursue. Even though I’m no longer studying political science, the city has afforded me so many opportunities in the non-profit and teaching world. If I’m interested in learning more about education policy, for example, The Center for Education Reform is a few blocks away from my dorm.”
What has been the highlight of your college career thus far?
“One of my favorite things about GW is the student body. I’m constantly inspired by students’ ability to 1) effectively organize and 2) speak out about decisions that they feel are unjust. Whether it is advocating for a woman’s right to choose at the Supreme Court or creating a campaign to advocate for workers’ rights on campus, our student body is extremely self-aware, passionate, and driven. While I am more progressively involved, all voices and opinions are respectfully represented, and I’ve had the opportunity to hear differing opinions on a myriad of topics. Political or not, students all have something that truly excites them and they utilize the city, putting in very long hours, to pursue their interests. My peers, bosses, professors, and general experiences around D.C. have all broadened my knowledge not only academically, but socially. I’ve learned what it means to be culturally competent and enter communities respectfully, as well as how to lead and strategize.”
“Outside of the people, I love being in a city. Little things, like walking out of my apartment and getting groceries a few blocks away, are so nice. Additionally, if there’s an activity that meets on campus but doesn’t fit into my schedule, I can probably find a group with a similar mission somewhere else in the city. In terms of DC, I love going to the monuments late at night to simply sit and chat with friends. My freshmen year, I went to hear some of the fifth graders I tutored read MLK’s “I have a dream” speech at The Lincoln Memorial, a presentation that their school organized. It’s still one of my favorite memories at GW.”
How did your time at Moravian Academy prepare you for college?
“Transitioning from the small, nurturing community of Moravian to the larger, autonomy-promoting environment that is GW was very difficult. That said, I believe Moravian helped to prepare me for college both in spirit and in mind. Reading authors like Zadie Smith, Tobias Wolfe, and Oscar Wilde in high school has allowed me to carry more informed conversations in talking with my English professors and my peers. Similarly, the redlining discussion we had in my high school economics class has served me well in my college sociology courses. Emotionally, Moravian’s emphasis on reflection allowed me to go into college with a strong sense of self, helping me to keep things in perspective and continue moving forward.”
What are your career aspirations?
“In the upcoming years I hope to be in the classroom—teaching grade school. Eventually, however, I may be interested in furthering my education—pursuing a career in academia or branching more into public policy, focusing on education. I really like writing and studying. Honestly, everything’s up in the air.”
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