Josh Maraldo ?26

Josh Maraldo

Class Year



Buffalo Grove, Illinois



Josh Maraldo ’26, a recipient of the R. William Miller scholarship, is majoring in geoscience. At Carthage, Josh is able to participate in the Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) program, conducting research tracking lake-ice phenology in the Novaya Zemlya Archipelago in hopes of finding patterns in ice melting trends and connections to climate change. During J-Term, he travelled to Nicaragua, where he studied the biology and geography of the area.

While Josh is unsure what he wants to do with his career, he knows that he will be happy with any job focusing on geoscience. “As long as my work gets me out into the field and I can go home at the end of the day knowing that I’m making a difference, I’ll be content.”

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“Carthage’s small class sizes were a huge win for me because I couldn’t imagine learning in a giant lecture hall with a hundred other students.”

Josh Maraldo, ’26

Why Carthage?

“I chose Carthage because of the higher quality it had compared to the other schools I looked at. The quality of education was amazing, as well as the many opportunities that students could get involved with. I got to meet many faculty members and students during my tours here, and everything I heard from them seemed to fit me perfectly. Also, you can’t beat that lake view.”

Faculty mentors

“Since joining the geoscience program, I’ve taken courses with all three professors in the field: Matthew Zorn, Wenjie Sun, and Joy Mast. Each of them has helped me further my education, and I am very grateful for that. Having the peace of mind that the faculty in charge of my program are so smart and knowledgeable about what they teach makes learning the content so much better, and it’s been fantastic.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class here so far was the Geology of the National Parks with Prof. Mast. I absolutely love the national parks here in the US, and I love rocks, so a class that I got to spend each day learning about those two topics in tandem was perfect for me. The class allowed us to explore around 40 national parks and how they each changed and formed since the earth began to become the natural beauties that they are today. While being centered on geology, the class is still very accessible to anyone outside of the geoscience major.”

Toughest class

“The toughest class I’ve gotten to take was Creative Writing. My writing has had to be very uniform and professional in order to succeed. So, when I started this course, I had a very hard time wrapping my head around how to write ‘creatively’ as it was a complete turnaround from what I was used to. It took some time and definitely a few tries, but eventually, I could grasp the content and succeed. I definitely learned a lot from the course, and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys writing and wants a challenge.”

Golden opportunities

“I had the opportunity to travel to the island of Ometepe in Nicaragua during J-Term. This was my first time leaving the country, so I was a bit nervous, but that went away immediately that first day on the island. It was some of the most beautiful land I have ever seen in my life, and everywhere I looked was some new flower or tree that I had never seen before. The people on the island were so welcoming and kind, and many of them helped us daily.”

“I was a part of the water project, and we spent our time setting up pipes along the side of the Maderas volcano. The project aims to provide clean and accessible water to the local town and is still ongoing. I loved every second of the trip, and I was very sad to leave, especially after meeting all the wonderful people there.”

Favorite spot on campus

“My favorite spot on campus is easily the beach. Doing some light rockhounding along the edge of the water is so fun and is a great way for me to learn about minerals. The lake can also create these massive build-ups of snow and ice, which form the most beautiful arches and caves with icicles everywhere.”

Favorite memory

“Carthage has a lot of really cool events the students can attend. At the beginning of each year, there are some events in The Oaks Circle and Campus Drive, which are really fun; I got to get a free caricature done of my roommate and I during one of those.”

Best study tip

“I like to study in my room, so I guess my best advice would be to decorate your space to be as comfortable and chill as you can. It helps me a lot to keep my area organized and looking good. Outside of where you study, try to talk to the other students in class if you are struggling, as they can help you. The professors are all super nice and willing to help if you are willing to learn.”

Best tip for making friends

“I met a lot of people during my first week of school whom I am still friends with now, so definitely get out and be social during those opening events. Other than that, talk to people in classes, make friends with students and professors, and be a good human being.”

Biggest surprise

“My high school had a larger student body than Carthage by over two times, so I didn’t even know everybody in my graduating class, let alone other grades. At Carthage, though, I feel like I’ve seen everybody at least once and know a bunch of people, so that’s been really cool. It all feels like a really tight-knit community.”