Class NotesView All Notes for Class of 2017
Happy holidays, ’17s! As we start to switch to those 2019 calendars, let’s take a look at what a couple of our classmates have been up to these past few months.
Out in the small part city of Mokpo, South Korea, is ’17’s own Nicole Simineri. Nicole has been out east teaching English since graduation, and she is currently in South Korea as a teaching assistant as part of her Fulbright scholarship. Nicole majored in Asian and Middle Eastern studies and was eager to immerse herself in the culture of South Korea, a country in which she had never lived. Although she did not speak a word of Korean beforehand, she enjoys her role and has formed close bonds with her students. As if working five days a week in a foreign language isn’t tiring enough, Nicole also volunteers for two organizations. She works with the North Korean Defectors Program, which helps children learn English, and the Korea Bridge Initiative, which is geared toward students who cannot afford English preparatory classes for college admissions standardized tests. In her free time Nicole explores her local community in Mokpo and even ventures out to other cities, such as Busan, Seoul, Daegu, and Ginzhu. While in Mokpo, she enjoys free kayaking in the port, going to arcades, and befriending locals and foreigners alike. When she is out of Mokpo, she typically attends cultural festivals. For instance, this fall she went to Andong for a mask festival that showcased traditional mask culture and performance in Korea. Although she adores teaching in Asia, Nicole is considering a change in scenery after the academic year ends, likely close to her family in New York.
Back on the East Coast, rather than in the eastern hemisphere, is Katie Vareika, who is a development associate for the special events team at the Boston Children’s Hospital Trust. Since she is from the suburbs of Boston, Katie is living at home with her family. She says it’s fun coming home and being able to eat dinner with her parents every night. Katie is particularly delighted to be at home because her parents just got an adorable puppy, Ruby.
For those, who didn’t know, Katie is one of the wonderful head agents for the class of ’17. Early in September alums returned to campus for the annual Class Officers Weekend. During this weekend there were speakers, panels, workshops, and social events for the various class officers. On the Friday of her arrival, Katie was relieved to spend a quiet night relaxing in the Hanover Inn and eating her favorite meal from the Hop. However, she received a phone call and was told to take the long trek to the Life Sciences Center for a gala. Quite unexpectedly, Katie learned that the reason she was called over was that the class of 2017 won the award for Class of the Year for all classes 25 years and younger! Although Katie was shocked and wearing jeans during the fancy gala, she went on stage with decorum and represented us well. Additionally, Mercedes de Guardiola won Treasurer of the Year and Elaine Lunsford and Alexandra Pattillo won Class Newsletter Editors of the Year. Thank you to all the class officers for your hard work and for being such a standout team!
—Dorian Allen, 117 West Grant St., Apt. 123, Minneapolis, MN 55403; (973) 986-5988; firstname.lastname@example.org