Graduation year: 2016
Majors: International business (marketing)
Kendall's activities: Varsity lacrosse, Global Connections, Student Government Association, Fellow Christian Athletes, Delta Chi Theta sorority, International Off-Campus Programming Committee
Internship: Sales internship at The HON Company, summer of 2015; sales and marketing internship with Linear Tiles in London, summer of 2014
Post-grad plans: I will pursue a career in sales, starting in the Boston area, with the hope of eventually relocating to Europe.
At first, I almost refused to attend a college smaller than my high school. I did not actually decide to attend Augustana until a week before the deadline, and it was the best last-minute decision I have ever made. The 12:1 student-to-teacher ratio was the ultimate deciding factor. I just needed to be in classes where the professors not only knew my name, but also knew me. Augustana also provided an environment for me to really get to know myself with a support system of faculty that actually cared about whether I graduated.
Are you where you thought you'd be four years ago?
Absolutely not — I am much further along than I thought I would be. I did not have expectations for how these four years should go, and I think that is what allowed me to become who I am today. I also did not anticipate how much I would grow over the course of these four years. I would have never thought I would have studied abroad twice, been a part of these organizations or met the people I have met during my time at Augie. These four years have flown by, and if I could do them again, I would not change a thing.
Who helped you get to where you are now?
Growing up, my parents consciously raised me to be independent and tough — constantly repeating the phrases "Work through it" or "You have to learn to do it on your own." Obviously, it was not always easy, but it designed me to feel ready to take on anything. I did not realize until recently that they were providing me with a confidence that allows me to fall and then get back up stronger. They have been more than supportive financially, allowing me to be able to study abroad, play lacrosse and live on campus. Without them I would not have been able to make the memories I've made or get to where I am today. I am forever grateful, and hopefully one day I will get the opportunity to pay them back!
A peak experience?
During the summer of my sophomore year, I had the chance to intern in London. The internship and academic course load abroad was challenging, but the experience was unforgettable. It was my first time out of the country alone, which was both exciting and nerve-wracking, but it forced me to grow up. Everything was completed on my own - visa, internship, travel and budgeting — which made the whole trip feel very personal. I have been back to London, on my own, over five times since that trip because I just cannot get enough!
What has surprised you?
It surprised me how much I could do in four years. Looking back at everything, I am amazed at how much can be accomplished in four very short years. I learned that I can take on more than I thought, physically and mentally. Being a student-athlete taught me a lot about myself in terms of priorities, ability and limits. The balance was challenging, and I definitely learned I am tougher than I thought I could be.
How did you use your Augie Choice?
I used my Augie Choice to travel to Portugal with my lacrosse team to play Germany's national team. The trip lasted only eight days, but we still talk about all the memories made during that week. Augie Choice covered the majority of the trip's cost, which allowed for more spending money to be used towards experiential things like paddle boarding, a ferry to Spain and authentic Portuguese dining.
What will you miss the most?
I will miss the people the most. I have developed strong relationships with my professors, teammates, sorority sisters and peers. Since Augie is so small, it is like a breeding ground for great friendships; we are forced to spend time with each other. Looking on to after graduation and to making the move out to Boston, I know I will miss being within walking distance from all of the wonderful people I have met here. They have all made the overall experience ‘one for the books,' and I would not have wanted to do it without them. It will be difficult to say goodbye, but I know I will see them later.
Advice for the Class of 2020?
My one piece of advice is ‘Do it.' There are so many opportunities here, and too much time is wasted wondering whether to give it a try. If you are thinking about studying abroad, then apply, and Augustana will help you get there. If you are thinking about creating a club, Augustana will give you a checklist. If you want to get an internship, Augustana will invite you to ProFair and introduce you to over 50 companies at once. If you want run for student president, Augustana will provide you with a strong and fair election. There is so much offered here that I honestly believe if you just do it, you will love it or learn from it. It is a win-win!
“Kendall is an excellent example of everything that is possible at Augustana. Between her participation in lacrosse, her internship in London, and studying abroad in Italy, Kendall has embraced all that a liberal arts education offers. Her achievements both inside and outside the classroom provide her a foundation for success in the business world. I look forward to following her future successes.”