Brianna Hill fell in love with Carthage when she visited her junior year of high school. “When I arrived, I immediately felt at home,” she said. “I felt like Carthage was exactly where I was supposed to be.”
Since then, Brianna has been involved in campus organizations like French Club, Circle K, International Friendship Society, Alpha Mu Gamma, and Psi Chi. “I love being busy and meeting new people, and the best way to do this is through extracurricular activities,” she said. “Some of my best memories have happened because of the clubs I belong to.”
Brianna is double majoring in French and psychology and she hopes to teach English abroad after graduation. “I am glad that I have tried many different things so that I have been able to see what I like best and what I would really like to spend my life doing. It’s important to always keep an open mind.”
“I like sharing my opinion and having a professor who cares about what I am saying and who makes me question my own opinions – in the best way possible.”
“I am not exactly sure, but I do know that I would like to teach English abroad, whether this be through a Fulbright grant, the Peace Corps, or the Teaching Assistant Program in France.”
How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?
“My favorite professors have been Prof. Pascal Rollet and Prof. Isabel Rivero-Vila. My first two French classes were with Isabel. Coming out of high school, my language skills were not the best, but Isabel really pushed me and I improved so much with her. She is also the advisor for International Friendship Society, which I am a part of, and so I have been able to get to know her outside of the classroom as well. She is a genuinely nice person and she has an infectious personality that makes learning fun. Professor Rollet has been my French professor as well, and he has helped my French language skills grow. He has very strong opinions and isn’t afraid to share them, but he is also completely open to hearing his students’ opinions, and wants us to express ourselves. I love that. I like sharing my opinion and having a professor who cares about what I am saying and who makes me question my own opinions – in the best way possible.”
“My favorite class is French Theater, taught by Prof. Pascal Rollet. It is a course for the senior French majors, so there are only three people total in the class. We are all such good friends, so I always look forward to going. In the class, we have analyzed some plays and learned some theater history, but the main goal is to perform a play at the end of the semester. To prepare ourselves, we have been acting out different scenes, and we even had to write our own and perform it during class! There are only three of us so we’re able to have in-depth discussions about the topics that interest us. Sometimes these lead to mini-debates and it’s interesting to do this in a foreign language. I can’t wait to see what the end of the semester brings for this class!”
“I love being busy and meeting new people, so the best way to do this is through extracurricular activities. I am an active member of French Club, Circle K, and International Friendship Society. I have held e-board positions in all of these clubs in the past and I am currently the secretary of Circle K. I am also a member of Alpha Mu Gamma and Psi Chi. This year, I have two on-campus jobs. The first is as the French fellow and I work with the French professors to do little tasks for them. My other job is with the Media Production Crew. I help film different events on campus. I have been lucky enough to produce a few different events and I direct a lot of them as well. I also make the schedule and respond to the other crew members’ questions. I love this position because it allows me to really get to know all of the crew members and to work directly with our bosses.”
“My toughest class by far has been Modern Art, which is an art history class taught by Professor Carolyn Hudson. I was put in this class by my advisor for my very first semester of college. I was so scared, not only because it was a 3000 level course and writing intensive, but also because I knew absolutely nothing about art history. During the class, I learned how to analyze paintings and vocabulary that pertains to art. I had to put a lot of effort into this class to receive a good grade. And though it has been my toughest class, it was a class that I ended up really enjoying. I now have a greater appreciation for art, and I remember a lot of what I learned, despite the fact that I took the class over three years ago.”
Internships or on-campus employment
“This past summer, I had an internship through Wisconsin Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (WAICU). I was lucky enough to be paid through this nonprofit organization, as well as intern in a non-profit and learn how they work. I was the Youth Services intern at Hedberg Public Library in Janesville, Wisconsin (which happens to be my childhood library!). Most of my time was spent sitting either at the Children’s Desk or Teen Central Desk and responding to various questions about the summer reading program, book suggestions, or just having conversations with the kids. I even hosted two of my own story times. My favorite was for 2- to 5-year-olds. We sang songs, read a story, and did a craft together. They were so energetic and excited to be there, it really put a smile on my face. The summer finale was a Comic Con-like event and a lot of the patrons came dressed up as their favorite characters. It was the best way to finish off my internship.”
Opportunities at Carthage
“During the spring of my junior year, I went to Rennes, France, to study for the semester. It was an amazing experience that I would recommend to everyone. I had always dreamed of going to France, and living there for five months was a dream come true. I was able to see a lot of the country and experience living like the French. I also had three weeks of vacation, which allowed me to travel to London and Morocco. I have also had the chance to perform at many different events around campus with my best friend, Meghan Johns. We have a band called Trustfall. I sing and Meghan plays guitar, ukulele, or piano. We have hosted two Wednesday Night Student Spotlights with CAB, competed in Battle of the Bands, and played at a few different benefit concerts. All have been such great experiences. I love that Carthage provides these opportunities for us to share our music with others.”
Favorite moments and memories at Carthage
“This is a tough question because so many things have happened to me over the past 3- 1/2 years. If I had to choose, I would say some of my best memories have happened because of the clubs I belong to. Every year, International Friendship Society hosts an International Dinner. My freshman year, I was very involved with the organization of it and I was even the stage manager. The night of the event was a success and I participated in the fashion show, wearing a traditional sari! All of the club members were amazing and we had such a fun time. Another memory was with French Club my sophomore year. We rented a shuttle and all of us went to a French restaurant in Milwaukee and then to the French film festival at UW-Milwaukee. I had a lot of fun bonding with the members, and a lot of them continue to be some of my closest friends!”
Favorite spot on campus
“As cliché as it is, I have to say by the lake. It is one of the reasons I choose to come to Carthage. We are so lucky to have such a beautiful campus. I like to go to the beach and just sit in the sand. Either alone or with friends, it is a great place to relax, or think, or talk with the people closest to you. I am even able to see it from my dorm room! I am definitely going to miss it once I graduate.”
Biggest surprise so far
“That things change. When I started Carthage, I wanted to be a clinical psychologist. But as the semesters passed, I became more interested in French and other languages and sharing languages with others. I no longer felt as passionate about being a clinical psychologist and decided that I would rather teach English abroad. I was surprised that my plans for the future were changing, but I like that I have the ability to follow through with those changes. Carthage has provided me with the opportunities for that. I’m not ‘stuck’ with clinical psychology.”
What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?
“Considering my 8-year-old self wanted to be a dolphin trainer, I think she would be really surprised at my career plans. I never considered leaving the country or traveling when I was younger, and now all of my plans include those things! People are constantly changing and with that comes changes in career paths. I am glad that I have tried many different things so that I have been able to see what I like best and what I would really like to spend my life doing. It’s important to always keep an open mind.”
Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?
“Do it! Be open to new things. Go for the majors that might not necessarily seem the most practical. Do what you love and you will find a way to be successful in the future. That’s why I chose to major in French and psychology. I am passionate about both of these subjects, and though they are not directly connected to one another, I’ll still able to find a way to bridge them together in my future career plans.”