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Kaite Zaborenko
More Than I Imagined Seniors reflect on accomplishments and look ahead

Kaite Zaborenko

Graduation year: 2024

High school: Glenbrook South High School

Hometown: Glenview, Ill.

Majors: Accounting; business administration (management)

Minor: Philosophy

Activities: Chi Omega Gamma sorority, Greek Council Executive Board, Dance Company, varsity swimming and Diving (four-time CCIW diving champion), Augustana's Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program

Internship: Ernst and Young – tax consulting

Post-grad plans: Work at Ernst & Young (EY) as a tax consultant

Why Augustana?

I chose Augustana because I saw my future here! I've always moved schools growing up and never really stayed at one place for a long time. Additionally, I've been to big schools and small schools, and never could fit at those specific schools. But being here at Augustana for four years has impacted my life for the better because of the environment here, and I would've never imagined being where I am right now without Augustana.

Are you where you thought you'd be when you first came to campus?

Not really. I knew I was going to have opportunities but not as many as I have up to this point. Augustana has so many opportunities, it's so hard to say no to all of them. But when you find your perfect fit for those opportunities, the environment and support here help you get to where you want to strive and achieve in that I don't think you can get anywhere. I'm so thankful that I've grown so much over the last four years here, and I don't regret any of it.

Who helped you get to where you are now?

A lot of people got me to where I am now, but here's a few special shoutouts:

My parents - Thank you for believing in me and giving me the opportunity to go to this school. Your hard work has paid off, and I'm so thankful that you've been supportive when I wasn't doing well and cheering me on when I was doing my very best.

My advisors and professors - Thank you for seeing so much in me when I didn't see it myself. All the hours in office hours not only helped me strive to become a better student, but also a better person. I appreciate all of your advice, and I'll never forget it.

My sorority family - Thank you for being in my life; you all supported me so much, and I can't wait to see how you all strive at Augustana!

To my friends and my significant other - Thank you for also being in my life. You all provided me motivation and support, and I look up to all of you as my role models, and I can't wait to see how you strive post-graduation!

Peak experience?

My peak experience was junior year spring semester. I've had a lot going on the first two years of college, especially transitioning into college during the pandemic. My spring semester junior year is where I had my life turn around for the better. I finally achieved being on the Dean's List, I became part of the executive board for the two clubs I've put my heart and soul in, and I got my dream internship that became my dream full-time job post-graduation.

What surprised you?

What surprised me was having a diving team here at Augustana. I dove throughout high school, and I really enjoyed doing it! When I came to Augustana to tour, it was like an addition to the reasons why I wanted to go here. I'm so glad I got to stick with diving because I get to have the best teammates and coaches who have supported me all four years!

What will you miss the most?

I will miss just being here at Augustana. Every day I get to see someone and say hi, or even catch up while walking to class. I'll also miss my sorority, my teammates, my roommates and my friends that I've made so many memories with here that I wouldn't get anywhere else!

Advice for the Class of 2028?

If you have an opportunity, take it! Having those opportunities, no matter if it's good or bad will help you become the person you want to be. Don't forget to prioritize yourself whether it be academically, socially or even mentally. You're going to do amazing things here at Augustana!

"I still remember meeting Kaite at Carver during a Visit Day. From that moment she was unstoppable and took advantage of every opportunity given to her and… she created opportunities! From running for a student government position to swimming and diving to dancing to landing a full-time offer with EY after her internship. She works very hard and is extremely personable. What a great journey, Kaite!"

– Nadia Schwartz, associate professor and chair, accounting