Student Profile

Maggie Welling

What brought you to St. Mike’s, and how did you make your decision to come here?

I was looking at Liberal Arts schools in New England - I just really like New England. My Aunt lives in Connecticut, and she told me a little bit about St. Mike’s, and my guidance counselor told me I should definitely consider it. So I e-mailed the coach of the Softball team and she told me to come up for a visit, and when I came to campus I just loved it. I applied, and it was my first choice, and now I’m here.

What’s one incredible memory or experience that you’ve had here so far?

This is probably more of a general thing, but everyone says hi to each other. You don’t even need to know them, they just say hi and smile, and that’s a big difference for me coming from a big city. Those little things make it feel homey.

Have you had a favorite class so far?

My favorite class is Approaches to Peace. Professor Gagne is just so intelligent, and she’s good at letting everyone share their opinion. Everyone in the class has different opinions, which makes for great discussions. I just like to listen, and I feel like I’ve learned so much. In just two months it’s brought my attention to so many different issues. I also really like my Intro to U.S. Politics class. Politics is my major, so I just find that kind of material interesting.

What do you like to do in your spare time?

I like to play softball, and I like to do community service a lot. After I graduate, I plan on doing a year in the Jesuit Corps. Other than that, I like hanging out with my friends, and going down to Burlington when I get the chance. I used to row a little bit back home, so I like to do that when I can.

Why did you choose to major in political science?

I always knew I was interested in history and the humanities over the sciences. The election in 2016 got me a lot more interested in politics. Living so close to Washington D.C., I was able to go to the Women’s March and the People’s Climate March, and I think being able to experience that really fostered my interest in politics. Service is also a passion of mine, so I like that political science is an area where I can incorporate service into my career.

Where does your passion for service come from?

My Mom is a lawyer, and she gets involved with a lot of service projects, so since I was little I've been able to tag along to service related events. When I got older, I realized that I thought that kind of thing was really cool, and I wanted to be involved rather than just tag along with my mom. So then in high school, I became a counselor at a camp for homeless children, called Camp. St. Vincent. I worked with five-year-olds who were homeless, and that really opened my eyes to a lot of things. Just driving to school in Baltimore, I would see so many homeless people, which just kind of broke my heart. I think that’s why I decided to go into a service related career.

What’s it like being part of a team here? How do you balance academics and athletics?

I love it. All the girls are so nice, and so are the coaches. The first few weeks of school I actually got a concussion during practice, and I was so afraid that no one would help me, but everyone was so supportive and accommodating. It gives you an immediate set a friends, too, which is nice. It is definitely hard to handle academics, but you just have to balance your time. I like to make lists and plan when I’m going to do everything.

Do you consider St. Mike’s your home away from home? If so, how did it become that for you?

It definitely has. It’s weird, sometimes I’ll say ‘I’m going home” but I mean that I’m going back to my dorm. It was definitely an adjustment, living eight and half hours away from home, and I’m an only child too. I was definitely homesick. The first week is probably the hardest, because you’re still adjusting to being in a different place. It’s not bad, it’s just different – for me, I had lived in the same house for 17 years. But I made friends, and meeting more and more people made me more comfortable with living here. My team was a support system as well. You just need to meet people with common interests, and bond over that. Getting involved with different organizations helps. The small classes and the community aspect of St. Mike’s just make it feel homey here, too.

What’s it like coming to Vermont from a big city?

I really love Vermont, and I really like Burlington. I mean, I love Baltimore, I can’t say anything bad about it, but the people here are a lot friendlier. In the city, when you’re walking, people just kind of put their heads down. Here, everyone says hi to each other. You don’t even need to know them, they just say hi and smile, and that’s a big difference for me coming from a big city. That kind of thing goes a long way in making it feel like home here, too, like I said before about the community aspect. I also think its kind of cool being from Baltimore when most people here are from Massachusetts, because it gives you something to talk about.

What would you say to prospective students about getting through the college process?

My experience might be a little different than most people because I was looking for a place where I could play Softball, but my Mom said to me that you should look at a big school and a small school to see what you prefer. So we visited a big University in Maryland, and being there I could tell that a big school like that definitely wasn’t for me. It’s stressful to try and plan visits to a bunch of places, but it helps a lot to actually go to the school if you have time. I think it’s helpful to keep an open mind, too. I always just thought I would go to Maryland, because that’s where most people from my high school went, but when I visited I realized it wasn’t for me. So I would say to try and broaden your search.

What would you say to all your fellow St. Mike’s students, if you had the opportunity?

I just want to thank everyone for being so welcoming and not giving me a hard time for being a freshman. When I was in high school, giving the freshman a hard time was definitely a big thing, but it’s definitely not like that here. Everyone’s just so welcoming.


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