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Kenoshans at Carthage

Aaron Freeman '19Aaron Freeman ’19

MAJORS: History, Spanish
LIVES: Off campus; commutes to campus

Why did you choose Carthage?
“I chose Carthage for three main reasons, in no particular order:

“First, I wanted to stay close to home for financial reasons, and Carthage presented greater opportunities than other local universities for a comparable cost to me after scholarships, which pay for most of my tuition. The scholarship opportunities to Kenosha residents were quite generous.”

“Second, Carthage is renowned for academic travel opportunities, so even though I ‘stayed local,’ by my junior year I had studied farther away from home than I ever imagined through Carthage’s exclusive and exciting January Term programs. Through Carthage, I have studied for two separate months in Guatemala and a semester in Chile.”

“Third, I am not a traditional student by most metrics, and I excel most when I do not feel pressured to conform to traditional paradigms in academia. Carthage’s close professor-student ratio and campus community have provided me with guidance and support to feel confident and comfortable accentuating my unique attributes.”

Did you always plan to come to Carthage?
“Carthage was always a part of my post-secondary plans, but I considered other options until I got accepted. That being said, Carthage was the only university to receive a completed application from me, because I believed deep down that my greatest opportunities were here. I have not been disappointed.”

Why did you choose to commute?
“I lived on campus for my first semester because I wanted to get out of the house and I had a good friend from high school with whom I had already talked about sharing a dorm. I enjoyed that experience while it lasted, but I had already planned on commuting for the rest of the time, and I was ready to make the switch when the time came. The commuting experience has worked out well for me, and Carthage is continuing to take steps to improve the experience of its commuters.”

Why should other Kenosha residents consider Carthage?
“For the same reasons that I did: highly competitive scholarships and exclusive travel opportunities that are easier to commit to when you are still close to your local support networks, your family and friends.”

What is your favorite part about being so close to home?
“I definitely deal with less stress than I would otherwise. At the same time, I can lean on my established support networks to reduce the stress that I do feel, as well as to find opportunities to put what I have learned at Carthage into practice. I particularly love working with old teachers, because their reflections on who I used to be, who they thought I would become, and who I am today have helped me to form my personal identity, refine my outlooks on my past experiences, and pursue my best prospects for the future.”

What is the biggest surprise you’ve experienced as a Kenoshan at Carthage?
“One big surprise has been how many fellow Kenoshans I have seen on campus, from old friends to familiar faces, and even some that I had never met. At the same time, and as a counter-balance, you see faces from all over the world at Carthage. The Target Language Experts on campus, for example, provide a crucial element of cultural diversity to the campus. As a Spanish language student, some of my most important learning moments have been outside of the classroom with the Spanish-language TLEs.”

Do you feel included in the school community? What has Carthage done to make you feel included?
“Absolutely. You could look at the long list of clubs that I have participated in or held leadership positions for over the years: the Association of Carthage Education Students (ACES), Carthage Meditation Club, Carthage WAVE Radio, Carthage Martial Arts Club, and even some time as the ACES representative in the Carthage Student Government. Through providing such a wide variety of extracurricular activities driven mostly by the student body, Carthage has fostered a diverse and welcoming atmosphere for any student looking to get involved on campus.”

Advice to potential Kenosha residents coming to Carthage?
“Introduce people to downtown Kenosha and your favorite spots around town. You will make friends, support local businesses, and contribute to the relationship between Carthage College and the City of Kenosha that has made this university so beneficial to our community, and vice-versa.”

Many Kenosha students worry about coming to Carthage because they want to feel like they’re living away from home. What would you say to them?
“You can live ‘away from home’ and still live close, and I think that this is the best of both worlds. Having a reliable support network is crucial to achieving your full potential as an undergraduate student. For many people, that reliable support network is easiest to construct at home, if they do not have one already.”

Do you feel that you are getting the full college experience?
“What a loaded term. I didn’t come to Carthage looking for more standards to fulfill. Aside from courses, I had no list of experiences to check off. I came to Carthage to make a college experience that was uniquely mine. That meant that, whatever I did, it would be for my personal and professional growth, not for any grade, prerequisite, or position. At Carthage, I have been able to maintain my academic independence through close relationships with professors, who made what appeared at first to be a long and limiting course requirement list into a flexible framework for graduation on my own terms.”

Favorite spot in Kenosha?
“For coffee and conversation: Common Grounds. For breakfast (the best meal): The Coffee Pot. For mental and spiritual strength and healing: Anywhere along the lake, or taking a stroll in the Peorio Park Nature Center right next to campus! For productivity: I usually do assignments, study, meet tutoring clients, and get my on-campus coffee fix at Einstein’s!”

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2020), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • The Tower, Carthage’s newest residence hall, provides some of the best views on campus — if not in the Midwest! In addition to #carthageviews of the lake from seven stories up, residents enjoy suite-style living and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about all housing options.

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wings, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • More than 90% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit Career Services.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. More than 90% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • Carthage has ranked as a top Fulbright producer for four of the past five years. Read about Carthage Fulbright winners.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our science center, student union, athletic and recreation center, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 15 years.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from archaeology to neuroscience, nursing to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our more than 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of students receive financial aid. Carthage awards more than $20 million in scholarship and grant assistance. That includes $5.5 million in competitive scholarships in business, mathematics, science, languages, the fine arts, leadership, and overall academic strength. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” recalls biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 35 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from $20,000 up to full tuition. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about the Carthage core.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 130 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Fencing to Frisbee, Chem Club to Stand Up Comedy. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked No. 3 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …

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