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Field Period Focus

Bobbi Jo Snyder
Bobbi Jo Snyder
Perkinsville, NY
Cohocton Valley Home
Dori Arbogast
Dori Arbogast
Newark, N.Y.
Newark Wayne Community Hospital

“What are you most thankful for?”

That time of year approaches, with turkeys, pies, cornucopias, and early Christmas shopping. For students, it is a wonderful time to spend time with family and friends, and perhaps to finish a paper or two.


Thanksgiving is a wonderful time, mainly for the company, and also for the food. As a college student, I am very grateful for the opportunity to just be with my family and unwind a little before crunch-time. But as a college student, I also belong to another, bigger academic family. I owe a lot of who I am today to the successes and struggles I have undergone as an undergraduate. My classmates, housemates, and professors have played an integral role in my development at Keuka. But what about the other key players?

Today, I went around and asked faculty and staff who (with one exception) did not teach courses, but still had integral roles to the day-to-day functions of Keuka College. These are the people that work with student life operations or help run offices or other vital components of the college. I am thankful for them because without them, my college experience would not be the same, and the college would not be as smooth running. These are important members of our college community, so it is important to hear what they are thankful for.

Michelle Sheldon, Academic Affairs Administrative Assistant: “My family and health.”

Jackie Clark, Front of the House (AVI): My family and my grandchildren.”

Amanda Miller, Retail Supervisor for AVI: “My family, and my position here at the college with the new food company.”

Patrick Reape, Director of Residence Life: “I’m thankful for a dedicated and hardworking staff.”

Kelsey Deso, Davis Residence Director: “Just my family. My nieces mainly. Existing in the world.”

Margeaux DePrez, Space Residence Director: “Sunshine and rainbows because I love sunshine, and we don’t see it in the winter.”

Rebecca Capek, Saunders Residence Director: “Family and friends is a big one, and the fact that I actually have a job after college.”

Eugene Mont, Ball Residence Director: “I’m thankful for Black Friday sales after Thanksgiving… [Rebecca responds: "So you can buy transformers!] Yeah, that’s what I’m really thankful for is Transformers.”

Joanne Jacobs, Experiential Learning Secretary: “Loved ones and family.”

Penny Webber, A.S.K. Office Manager: “My family and friends.”

Carole Lillis, Director of A.S.K. Office/Assistant Professor of English: “Health for my family.”

Jim Blackburn, Dean of Students: “Personally, I’m thankful for my wonderful family and kids. And I guess professionally I’m thankful for being able to work with college students and all of their energy and varied perspectives on life.”

Tracy McFarland, Associate VP for Student Development: “Just the opportunity to take some time off and be with my family.”

Betty Hill, Student Affairs Office Manager: “I’m thankful that I have the opportunity to be here at Keuka, and my favorite part of the job is getting to know students.”

Michelle Waugh, Sales Associate: “Probably my family and being retired from the army–finally, after 21 years!–and the hope to someday have peace.”

Gretchen Parsells, Manager of Communications: “I’m thankful for my son–he’s the greatest thing ever. I’m thankful that I have a family who loves me… and I’m thankful that I have a job I absolutely love.”

Jessica Noveck, Student Services Representative (Registrar): “I am thankful for having a healthy family that will be with me during the holidays.”

Beth Tillman, Student Services Representative (Registrar): [After hearing Jessica's response) "You took mine!" [To me] “Ditto.”

Hopefully this puts you in the spirit of gratitude (or the “attitude of gratitude”). I think, as college students in America, we take way too much for granted. So enjoy the time with family, and enjoy the food. But most of all, do not forget the little things that make each day possible.

Just before I spoke with Dean Blackburn, he had sent out an email that I read afterward. It said:

Even with all the world’s turmoil and our perplexing challenges here at home, it is good to pause and reflect on all our many blessings and advantages as Americans and citizens of the world. Take time to thank those who support, encourage and love you, including faculty, staff and friends here at Keuka. I hope you all have a relaxing and enjoyable Thanksgiving. Please be safe in your travels.

With that wonderful message in mind, safe travels, and Happy Thanksgiving!

About Erica Ruscio

Hey, all you prospective Keuka students! My name is Erica Ruscio, class of ’13. I have a double major in English with a concentration in creative writing, and visual & verbal art. I also have a minor in communications.

I am the chief blogger and wordsmith for the admissions blog, Eye on the Storm, here at the Keuka Communications Office. I am in charge of posting pertinent information that will help you, as a prospective student or member of the Keuka College community, grow in understanding of what it’s like to a part of this wonderful and exciting college.

Just so you can get to know me a bit better, here are some fun stats:

Hometown: Middlesex, N.Y.

Career Goals: To become a children’s librarian and publish and illustrate children’s and young adults books

Campus Clubs: Arion Players Drama Club, Sigma Tau Delta, Lambda Pi Eta (Treasurer), Women’s Center Advocacy Club (Co-President)

Work-Studies: Admissions Blogger, Lifeguard, TeamWorks! Facilitator, and A.S.K. Writing Tutor

Most Recent Field Periods: I worked with Youth Services at Penn Yan Public Library this past summer, and I worked at Lightner Library this past January.

Activities I Enjoy: Going to concerts (any genre, mostly rock), playing guitar, camping, art (painting, drawing, design), drinking coffee (like it’s my job), running, blogging and designing websites, reading, and creative writing

Favorite book/movie: The Lord of the Rings trilogy (the books and the movies)

Why I love Keuka: The amazing and abundant opportunities and the amazing and personable faculty and staff!

View all posts by Erica Ruscio →

3 Responses to “What are you most thankful for?”

  1. Darren says:

    Nice . Im sharing mine, I’m thankful for every blessings god has given me . everything . btw nice read :)

  2. Gary O'Neill says:

    The amazing and abundant opportunities and the amazing and personable faculty and staff, Keuka is amazing.

  3. Londoner says:

    Really great post, I can see how the holiday is important to you but can still interlace it with the university as this is also something to be thankful for.

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