With graduation just days away, we asked some seniors about their time at St. Thomas. From their most memorable moments and post-graduation plans to college life advice they’d give first-year students arriving in the fall, here’s what they had to say about their St. Thomas experience.

Morgan Jensen

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?

I will never forget the Tommie-Johnnie football game at Target Field this past fall!

What are your plans after graduation?

I will be sticking around and working as an admissions counselor at St. Thomas. I am so excited to recruit future Tommies!

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall?

Get involved right away and try to find a couple of good friends. The friends you meet your freshman year will most likely be your best friends for the next four years!

Peter Watson

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas? 

Working with the administration to create the Veterans Resource Center and helping make St. Thomas more military friendly.

What are your plans after graduation? 

I will be leaving for a six-week internship in Aix-en-Provence, France, on May 31 and then will pursue my graduate degree in international relations at the Geneva School of Diplomacy (Switzerland) in the fall.

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall?

Be engaged on campus. There are a multitude of clubs and organizations on campus, which means there’s no excuse not to be involved. Additionally, do your best to make your club, organization, or even campus, better than when you arrived. Always strive to be better. 

Annie Youngblood

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?

At the end of my freshman year, when all of my friends were moving out of their dorms, I remember sitting in the room of some of my friends, and being overwhelmed by the sense of love, belonging and purpose I had experienced in just my first year at St. Thomas. Being with my friends, I started thinking about how lucky I was to have met each of them, and how I had never imagined the relationships I could have built while being here – and to know that I had another three years to continue developing them! I was so overwhelmed I was both crying and laughing at the same time. An excess of positive emotions, this certainly was one of my most memorable moments at St. Thomas.

What are your plans after graduation?

I will stay on campus for the summer as the undergraduate intern with the Orientation and Registration Department. This fall, I plan on an AmeriCorps VISTA position in Minneapolis for a year while applying to grad schools and hopefully enrolling in a doctoral program in sociology in fall 2019.

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall?

Be open to new experiences, engage in what you want to engage in, and take FULL advantage of everything the university has to offer you. I think people come to a four-year institution for education, but more than anything it’s for the community of learning together and being around thousands of other humans going through (more or less) the same life experiences as you. Engage intentionally, learn about yourself and others and listen to your heart. Be true to yourself and grow.

Ryan Foster

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas? 

When I accidentally deleted the selfie I took with the freshman class during my address as student body president during March Through the Arches … later in the ceremony, I made sure to let everyone know how bad I was at technology and that we had to take it again.

What are your plans after graduation? 

I’m moving to St. Louis Park after graduation and will be working at Universal Hospital Services in Bloomington in a newly created role as their talent acquisition specialist in the Human Resources Department. 

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall?

Get involved with something you’re passionate about and meet new people. It’s easier said than done but going out of your way to introduce yourself to someone new is how you build your lifelong network.

Kaylee Nguyen

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?

My most memorable moment at St. Thomas was right before I went abroad on the London Business Semester (although my experience abroad was one of my best experiences in itself). It hit me how many great connections and friends that I had made at St. Thomas, and how many of them I was going to truly miss. I am so thankful to have met people who made saying goodbye so hard and I am so lucky to say that they are all still my best friends! Every little moment with them is memorable.

What are your plans after graduation?

I have accepted a full-time position with Dover Corporation as an associate in their Supply Chain Development Program. The program will consist of three eight-month rotations in three different operating companies around the states and the globe. My first eight-month rotation will be in Cincinnati, Ohio, as a strategic sourcing analyst. I am excited to learn where my following two rotations will be.

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall? 

If you never try, you will never know. I came into freshman year having no idea what I wanted to do with my life but knowing that I wanted to try. I would say that joining Tommie Ambassadors and other clubs on campus – if even for one meeting – helped me make real connections at St. Thomas. Additionally, don’t take good professors for granted. Build those connects and keep them. I have many now who serve as mentors to me and will continue to help me throughout my career. Lastly – HAVE FUN.

Amanda Post

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?
Announcing the $200 million scholarship initiative with President Julie Sullivan was a surreal experience, and I am honored to have been a part of it. I will also forever remember my J-Term trips to Guatemala and Bolivia with VISION. St. Thomas has taught me how to challenge my head and my heart in ways I never expected.

 What are your plans after graduation?

I will be working as a senior research analyst for the Lewin Group, a branch of Optum at the Eden Prairie campus. I will be analyzing and conducting qualitative and quantitative health care research in order to inform policy. #NerdAlert #DataIsCool

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall?

St. Thomas is full of amazing connections. Make a point to build and maintain relationships with not only your professors, but upperclassmen and even alumni. They will often be the key to opening new doors.

Kathy Melton

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?

As the president of St. Jude Up ’til Dawn, my greatest memory was finding out our fundraising grand total my senior year. There was no way I thought that we raised more than $95,000 but we did and I was ecstatic!

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation I plan to take a gap year to apply to physician assistant school and gain experience and patient care hours.

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall? 

I would tell them to get close to their professors, ask questions, go to office hours and get involved in research! People usually tend to regret their grades their first year. Plus, if you get involved early, you’ll have a longer time to build relationships and experience different roles!

 

 Jacob Hartmann

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?

 My most memorable moment at St. Thomas was watching the Tommies beat the Johnnies at Target Field!

What are your plans after graduation?

After graduation I will be working as a project manager at GN ReSound. I will be helping to establish a new business area that creates advanced hearing protection devices for military service members.

What college life advice would you give first year-students starting in the fall?

Embrace change, challenge yourself and get involved on campus!

 

Nykeesha Greer

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?

Probably going to Australia this past J-Term through study abroad! Ever since freshman year, I knew I wanted to go abroad but had no idea where I’d want to go or how I’d do it. Definitely couldn’t complain when class consisted of going to the beach to surf, going to the Australian Open and exploring Australian culture.

What are your plans after graduation?

Working at 3M as a supply chain analyst.

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall?

Chase the opportunities that St. Thomas has to offer and push yourself even further if it feels outside of your comfort zone. From doing research, being a resident advisor, and studying abroad, I can attest to the fact that none of these experiences felt natural to me and at times I questioned why I got involved with what I did. In the end, these different experiences helped me become more well-rounded and ultimately made me proud of what I was able to be a part of during my time at St. Thomas.

 

Sarah Beck

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?

Although not incredibly glamorous or exciting, my most memorable moments have been those when I’m with my friends that I’ve made at St. Thomas. Whether we’re out on the quad or at dinner in Binz Refectory, it was in those moments that I knew I had made friendships that I will value and foster for the rest of my life.

What are your plans after graduation?

This coming fall, I will begin my first semester of dental school at the University of Minnesota.

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall? 

If I could tell incoming students just one thing after they finally walk through the Arches, I’d tell them to be patient with themselves. Take the time to explore everything that St. Thomas has to offer you. Try new clubs, go to interesting events/talks on campus and find what things you are passionate about. It may take some time but finding your niche on campus is the thing that will truly make you feel a part of the community. And, come senior year perhaps, will make it all the more difficult to have to leave.

 

Annie Vitale

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?

My most memorable moment at St. Thomas was cheering and performing with the Dance Team at the Tommie-Johnnie football game at Target Field.

What are your plans after graduation?

I am currently working for a local interior design company and planning to pursue a master’s degree in architecture in the future.

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall? 

Make the most of the time you have at St. Thomas and take advantage of all the amazing resources and opportunities the university has to offer. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and get involved on campus. Also, make the trek to Binz Refectory. It’s definitely worth it!

Erin Abbe 

What’s your most memorable moment at St. Thomas?

There are too many amazing memories to count, but the first time that I referred to St. Thomas as “home” in a casual conversation stands out to me. I’m blessed to say that St. Thomas is and always will feel like home to me.

What college life advice would you give first-year students starting in the fall?

Don’t be afraid to ask for help. College is intimidating and it can feel like you need to figure it all out on your own, but there are so many people who are in your corner and willing to help (sometimes you just need to take the first step and ask!): professors, friends, counselors and so many more. Oh, and call your parents often – they miss you and you’ll miss them!

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