Kirstin Nygaard

AmeriCorps VISTA for College Access and Retention
knygaard@smcvt.edu
Call me: 802.654.2806

Best tip for students coming for a campus visit

Ask as many questions as you can! A campus visit is the perfect time to ask those burning questions about the campus you’ve been thinking about—there’s no such thing as a stupid question! Take the opportunity to get different perspectives from faculty, staff, and current students to get a feel of the school.

Favorite thing about Burlington

The sheer number of places that you can get great ice cream.

Why did you decide to become an AmeriCorps VISTA?

I decided to serve as an AmeriCorps VISTA because I wanted to support and advocate for underrepresented populations in higher education. As a first-generation college student myself, I relate to the challenges these students face applying to college; transitioning to a new place, and navigating this unfamiliar territory. In my role this year, I have the opportunity to use my skills and past experiences to introduce K-12 students to college and future planning; assist and educate current students about resources they can utilize; and assess what support systems do we have and don’t have that can be beneficial to college access and overall retention.

Testimonial

The community here at Saint Michael's College has welcomed me with open arms, providing me with unconditional support while transitioning into my role here. This care and compassion is simply part of the culture: folks want to help you be successful, confident, and happy during your time here.

Education

Florida State University, B.S. Sociology, 2017

Favorite Books

1984 by George Orwell
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
The Stranger by Albert Camus

Favorite Quote

"Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path."
- Brene Brown

Learn What Matters