BackgroundInterview Date:April 2019
Gender Identity: Male
Sexual Orientation: Heterosexual
Graduation Year: 2020
High School Experience: Private high school in Norwalk, Connecticut with 21 students in the graduating class. There was a culture of going to college.
First generation college student: No
Major: Film and Television Production
Minors: Cinema Studies and Philosophy
Extracurricular Activities: I’m in a TV program called MCTV. I participate in a new club they just opened up called Red Fox Film Productions, where you can produce your own films. I’m also on Club Fencing.
Did any of your extracurricular activities have a particularly big impact on your experience? In what ways?
Each of them has had a relatively big impact on my experience, each in a different way. Fencing has helped push me through difficult classes and teaches me to give it your all because you’ll never know what’ll happen. The Marist Television Club and the Red Fox Film Club have taught me new things about film and production that I never knew. The majority of my experience was strictly studio based.
Do you do research? If so, how easy was it to get involved in the research?
It was easy for me to get involved in it. When I first came to Marist, I was nervous about being in a whole new environment. Overall, getting involved in everything wasn’t too hard.
Can you describe your weekly coursework for your major?
The major graded assignments are either editing based coursework using programs the school provides, or just creating your own projects through film.
Is there anything that you feel your major’s department does especially well or especially poorly?
My major’s department is really flexible with helping each of the students with our film projects. Something they could improve on is their spending, but it’s slowly getting better. The Communications department has a decent budget, but I don’t believe they’re using it to its fullest potential.
How would you describe the learning environment? Do you think it’s particularly competitive or collaborative?
It’s really collaborative. In my major, I have to work with a lot of people in my class and really go out there and ask for help. It’s strictly collaborative, which I like. I know other majors are pretty competitive.
How accessible have the professors in your department been?
The professors in my department have been pretty accessible. They’re required to have office hours three days of the week, and they leave their schedule open in between classes.
What has been your favorite class you’ve taken for your major?
What has been your least favorite class you’ve taken for your major?
On and Around Campus
Where have you lived on campus?
Freshman: Champagnat Hall with one roommate.
Sophomore: Foy Townhouse with ten roommates.
Junior: After getting back from abroad, I lived in a Fulton Townhouse with eight roommates.
How was transitioning from your hometown in Connecticut to Poughkeepsie, NY?
It wasn’t too bad. I only live an hour and a half away, which I think is the perfect distance where I could get home if I needed to, but I have my own independence. Transitioning to a totally new town was a completely new experience that I felt ready for. I managed to get by within the first semester.
Can you describe the level of safety on and around campus?
I’ve experienced very good safety. Nothing has happened to me that would make me feel unsafe.
Pros and cons of being in Poughkeepsie?
1) It’s relatively close to New York City. You can take a train to Grand Central Station that is a 10-minute walk from campus.
2) It’s right on the Hudson River, so if you’re ever stressed about your classes you can take a walk on the Hudson.
1) It’s located right next to a pretty poor town. It’s coming back from poverty and a little bit of crime, but you’d want to travel in pairs if you go out into the town.
2) The Hudson River, because it’s really polluted. Marist is trying to help the river, but the efforts haven’t been too good.
What kind of weekend activities or nightlife do you like to participate in?
I don’t participate in partying or nightlife too much, but occasionally I will go out with my friends to hang out. That would involve going over to one of their houses and socializing, laughing, and playing games. I don’t go to clubs or anything like that.
What are your favorite events or activities?
My favorite events on campus would have to be the events that the clubs host. They are allowed to host events for members, and they try to get new members to join.
What’s an alternative to going to a party or a bar that you like for a night out?
Other than going to clubs or bars, there are some restaurants you could go to. There are also club parties that do happen.
How happy are you with the weekend options at Marist? If you could change anything, what would you change?
I’m very happy with the options at my school.
How did you meet your closest friends?
I met my closest friends through the ice breaker activities the school had us do when we first got here. The only other close friends I’ve met are through clubs.
How would you describe the overall social scene at Marist?
It’s pretty big. Everyone is really nice to one another.
To what extent do people of different races and sexual orientations mix socially?
They’re able to mix socially because Marist is pretty strong with its diversity. Multiple clubs help with this, and a lot of students are interested in them. For example, there is an LGSA club which has a huge following at Marist. A lot of people attend the club not because they’re gay or transgender, but because they’re interested in that lifestyle. There are other clubs for foreign exchange students who come here. There’s an African Culture and Asian Alliance club. [About 76% of the Class of 2022 is White.]
How would you describe the student body?
It’s very energetic, and from what I’ve seen, people are level headed and go after what they want. People are also really nice.
How do you like the size of your school? How has the size of your school influenced your social experience?
I like the size. It only has about 5,000 people which I really like. It’s not too big to where I’m not able to know my professors and talk to them one-on-one, but it’s also not too small where I’m the only one contributing in class. It also helps with group sizes. If you’re part of a large group, not everyone can get their voice heard. [The average class size is 18-26 students.]
To what extent do people in Greek life and not in Greek life mix socially?
Greek life here is really small, and I haven’t had a chance to associate with too many people in Greek life. [About 6% of students are involved in Greek life.]
Do people generally seem happy with Marist by senior year? Do people leave loving your school?
My experience with talking to people that go to Marist is they do enjoy all the years they’ve been here, even if they’ve transferred.
Has the alumni network helped you find internships or jobs?
Yes, they have. A lot of the interns in the Film department specifically come back to the school for alumni days to help the current students find internships and give them advice.
What have you used the career office for? How helpful have they been?
I’ve used the career offices for helping me build up a resume and helping me create cover letters. They’re very helpful, but I find the only issue with it is trying to find time to go. You have to make an appointment.
Have you learned any computer programs or computer languages that will be helpful professionally?
The programs I’ve learned are more so film based, like editing software or after effects software, not really programs like Microsoft.
Have you used financial aid? If so, accommodating was the office to your needs?
I’ve used financial aid to help pay for college, but I haven’t had any issues with them.
What is something you wish you knew about Marist before entering as a freshman?
I wish I knew how connected everything is and how easy it is to get involved in certain situations. Coming into it, I would’ve thought it would be difficult to get involved, and that’s what kept me nervous during my first semester. The friends I met my first year helped get me involved. They recommended clubs to go to, and I eventually found ones I wanted to go to.
What is something a prospective student may miss on a visit that’s worth checking out?
There are two new buildings recently constructed. They’re really nice and have pretty good cafes. I feel that food is one of the driving points of going to college.
Reasons to attend Marist:
1) There’s lots of diversity at Marist. Not just the culture and the people around you, but also with majors, minors, and clubs. It’s very diverse and inclusive.
2) Everyone is nice, and they will help you if you ask for it.
3) The location. It’s not too far from parks to walk through if you’re bored or stressed.
Reasons to not attend Marist:
1) The food program here. The cafeteria food isn’t too great.
2) Marist is still developing some of its programs. In some departments, it could seem like they still need help expanding it.
3) The weather. Given that we’re right by the Hudson, a cool breeze could come up and it can feel 20 degrees below the temperature.