Alumni Profile

Matt Connolly '13

Hall Director and Master's Student, Providence College

What did you appreciate most about your time at Saint Michael's?

The ability to interact with lots of different people! Whether it was as a tour guide, studying abroad, on a MOVE service trip, or on the Alumni Board of Directors, I really appreciated being able to get to know lots of different people in lots of different settings.

What are you doing now?

I'm currently working at Providence College as a Hall Director and getting my Masters degree in History.

How have you applied what you learned at St. Mike's to your professional life?

Probably one of the biggest lessons was to treat everyone with dignity and respect. In my position I have to interact with lots of different people in a variety of situations, and if you're not treating people with dignity and respect your conversation isn't going to go anywhere.

Have you come back to St. Mike's to visit?

It's such a dynamic area. Obviously you can't talk about Vermont without talking about the mountains. I've always been a big skier and loved being able to see Mount Mansfield from The View. At the same time, one of the best summers I've ever had was the summer I worked on campus and got to see Burlington in the summer. I try to get up there a few times a year, definitely more during ski season.

Did you have a favorite class or professor?

Jeff Ayres and Trish Siplon both had such a huge impact on the journey my life has taken, both during and after SMC. Dr. Ayres helped to coach me through creating my own major and brought IR to the entire St. Mike's community. Trish was my thesis adviser, and helped me to take my ideas and create something very academically strong. They've both helped me to stay engaged with the college since I graduated in 2013.

What advice would you give incoming students?

Be yourself. You've got a unique opportunity to start fresh and be the person you want to be, who is not always the same person that you were in high school. Take advantage of that opportunity and do the things you want to do. Be yourself, be genuine, and you will meet other people just like you.

What would you like fellow alumni to know?

We all are part of one big family. It's amazing that alumni who graduated 50 years ago have the same fond memories of alumni from the 2000's. Campus might be different but the experiences are very similar.

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