Tricia Phillips '16Math major from Williamson, NY
After visiting more than 20 schools, I landed at Hartwick because of the good feel and friendliness of the school. The people were overly sweet and helpful, the professors seemed invested in the students' lives and I was attracted to the close-knit community that Hartwick had to offer. I wanted to know my professors and have them know me on a more personal basis, rather than just in the classroom. That one-on-one attention is what I desired.
What are your classes like?
My classes are very small, which is what I like about Hartwick, because the professors know me by name and know my strengths and weaknesses specifically. The professors here are engaging and bring such diverse background experiences to Hartwick that it helps each faculty member function and teach in different ways.
What does "theory into practice" mean to you?
"Theory in practice" is another term for experiential learning. It's bringing what we have learned in the classroom to the outside world and actually doing hands-on learning instead of listening to a lecture; it gives students the opportunity to observe the real world where real people are working on real problems/projects in their real jobs. It brings the real out of the theoretical, which is very neat and helpful at this age.
How have your professors made an impact on your education?
My professors and advisors have impacted my education by simply being there for me and being supportive. I go and talk to my professors not only about academics, but also about what is going on in my life, running, career paths and struggles. They are always there to listen and the fact that they are so available and willing to listen and help makes my education career at Hartwick that much more enjoyable. I know they care about me and my future, which inspires me to work harder.
What do you do outside the classroom?
Outside of the classroom, I am a busy bee. I am on the cross-country team, work as a Blue Key Tour Guide for prospective students visiting the school, will be a Resident Advisor this upcoming year, am on the executive board of Hartwick Institute of Leadership (HIL), and enjoy participating in Habitat for Humanity and Multi-Sport Club. My spiritual life is extremely important to me, as well, and that is why I am part of the Christian Fellowship on campus. I also do some community service, and my last year highlights were destroying and building homes in Schoharie County where there were victims of the flood, and helping build homes in North Carolina on our annual Habitat trip. I also try to squeeze in some fun with my friends, too, since college is the time to work hard and play hard.
How do you describe Hartwick to your friends back home?
I tell my friends that Hartwick is a small, warm-and-fuzzy kind of school. The faces are mostly familiar on a day-to-day basis, but there are new faces daily, as well. The professors are top-notch and I feel like it's home to me.
What comes after Hartwick?
After Hartwick ... well, who knows? My ultimate dream is to be a math professor at a small, private liberal arts undergraduate college (a school just like Hartwick!) and therefore, I must embark on a journey to obtain a doctorate. Currently, I am looking at my options and may consider getting a doctorate specifically in math education. However, I never know what life will throw at me next, and graduate school may be not be in the works until a few extra years down the road, if I choose to do something like the Peace Corps in between. With that said, at the end of my life, I want to be the person saying to others "If you love what you do, you'll never work a day in your life." My goal is to find something I am so passionate about that I am excited to go to my career each day.
What would you tell future Hartwick students?
I would tell them to not be nervous if they do not know what they want to do. I have changed my mind with my career and major plans multiple times, and it really is okay to do that because you will grow and find out more about yourself as time goes on. Also, go out and explore. Don't stick to your comfort zone, because you never know what will discover that you love doing or that you're passionate about. Don't let anyone deter you from you dreams. Once you find what makes you excited, don't turn away from that. We need more spirit in this world!