Friday, October 18, 2013

Student Spotlight: Catherine Keller

Although I am happy with my decision to be a Fordham College Rose Hill student, the exciting new developments going on at Fordham's Lincoln Center campus got me thinking about how life would be different if I had opted for the smaller, more urban setting that LC offers. I decided to interview Catherine Keller, a Lincoln Center senior double-majoring in dance and Spanish students, to learn more about the Fordham experience at Lincoln Center.

Q: Why did you choose the Lincoln Center campus?
A: Throughout my college search, I knew that I would feel most comfortable at a small liberal arts school. Coming from a private arts high school of just 300 total students, I definitely was not looking to sit in a lecture hall with 300 students! For me, Lincoln Center felt like the perfect fit. It has a small tight-knit community of both students and faculty. My professors actually get to know my name in class, as well as my personality and my opinions on different issues. It also has an awesome location, which allows me to be involved in dance around the city, to have a job as a nanny, and to eat at tons of great restaurants!

Lincoln Center in the fall! [credit]
Q: How would you describe the atmosphere and student body of the LC campus?
A: I would describe Lincoln Center students as very aware of current events and hot topics around the city and globally. They also tend to be involved in different clubs or internships in the city and so are very driven. Students at the Lincoln Center campus tend to take advantage of all of the theaters, restaurants, and museums, many of which are within walking distance. The atmosphere of the Lincoln Center campus is very friendly; it is extremely rare to walk down any hall and not run into a smiling, familiar face. There are also club events or meetings happening almost every night, and colorful flyers cover the walls announcing different ways to be involved within the campus, as well as outings to fun places off campus.

Q: What do you like about Fordham's Lincoln Center campus that isn't something students can find at Rose Hill?
A: A unique aspect of the Lincoln Center campus that I love is all the involvement in the arts. There is either a mainstage theater production or a student-run studio show happening practically every other week. The multiple visual arts gallery spaces rotate different exhibits, both student and professional artist work, so as you enter the school, you pass by beautiful art. The dance program also offers performances throughout the year and we love to get our friends’ support for those nights.

The FCLC BFA in dance is offered through Alvin Ailey. [credit]
Q: What has been your favorite class that you've taken at Lincoln Center?
A: My favorite class at Lincoln Center has been Conversation and Composition in the Spanish Department with Professor Lamas. Every week we watched a different movie before class on Tuesday, when we would discuss major themes and questions brought up in the movie. Then on Friday, we would bring in a short essay we had written about one of these themes and review them in class to work on elevating our writing style. It was a fun and creative way to practice both speaking and writing in Spanish.

Q: What is your favorite FCLC memory?
A: My favorite FCLC memory is definitely when I was eating lunch with my roommate one day sophomore year in the Ram Cafe and my theology professor from freshman year, Dr. Papanikolau, walked up to the table. He greeted me by name and proceeded to ask me about what classes I was currently taking and how my year had been going. I was totally blown away by the fact that he even remembered me, never mind genuinely held an interest in my college experience. We ended up having a twenty-minute conversation.

The new Fordham Law School building will also house LC dorms! [credit]
Q: Are the exciting new changes happening at Lincoln Center affecting your daily life?
A: There haven’t been many changes to my daily life just yet. I have heard a lot of students around campus talking about the new fashion minor, the humanitarian affairs major, and the business programs coming to Fordham College at Lincoln Center. Unfortunately I will graduate before all of the new facilities open up in the fall but there will be some beautiful spaces for students and an additional dining option.

Q: What are your plans for after graduation?
A: I plan on auditioning for modern dance companies in New York City. I want to take advantage of this time while I am still young enough to dance and perform. After that, I am really interested in either joining or starting my own NGO that would work with schools in countries in Central America to spread arts education. This would combine my knowledge and love of dance with my interest in Central America. I believe this sort of work would also reflect all that I have learned attending a Jesuit University regarding the importance of addressing social justice issues and working with communities across the globe.

Fordham students are doing amazing things. Look for another Student Spotlight next month!

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