By Alison Berstein
The Voice chatted with Amelia Cordischi, class of 2015, to listen to her Simmons story.
When someone mentions Simmons, what feelings, thoughts, or memories come to mind?
Whenever I mention to someone that I went to Simmons, they always smile. Everyone I encounter seems to either have attended Simmons or knows a friend or relative that has graduated from Simmons.
They are quick to tell me what a wonderful reputation the school has and that makes me proud that I am a part of the Simmons legacy.
Any favorite Simmons memories?
My whole Simmons experience is one for the scrapbooks. However, among my favorite memories are the times I spent with the late Len Mailloux and the radio team. The first day I stepped on the Simmons campus, I was introduced to Simmons College Radio, otherwise known as The Shark. It quickly became my home away from home.
I served as the weekly DJ for my program “The Find,” and went on to manage the station my junior and senior year. I remember late-night broadcasts from the studio, the 2012 presidential broadcast with my co-anchor Len Mailloux and the annual Intercollegiate Broadcast System Conference (IBS) in New York that connected us with other college radio stations throughout the country.
The experience and friendships gained at the station are a part of my Simmons experience that I will never forget. I am proud to see that the station is thriving so that others will have the experience I had. Its vitality is a wonderful tribute to Len Mailloux, who loved the station so much, and helped me and my fellow DJs to love it as well.
Is there a class assignment that you worked on that you particularly enjoyed?
During my freshman year, Professor White gave the class a project with a vague description and virtually no direction. At first everyone panicked and was frozen.
However, with an impending deadline, some of us decided to take initiative and tackle the project. We drew on our own interpretations, creativity, and skillsets. Those that had taken on the challenge to see beyond what was spelled out in words received high marks, while those that did not failed.
Now that I am part of the working world I look back on that project and realize that Professor White, in his unique way, was teaching us an extremely valuable life lesson, that life does not come with a set of directions.
He taught us that you must utilize the skills and knowledge that you gain through experiences and at Simmons, and that you must have the confidence that you have the tools to do anything you set your mind to…maybe to even change the world!
What have you been up to post-graduation (jobs, volunteering, etc.)? Do Simmons values reflect those activities?
Two of the main things Simmons taught me were to embrace diversity and to give back to my community. Those two values and the skills I gained as a student worker at the Simmons Alumni and Marketing Offices have led me to my current position as the Development and Digital Media Associate at The Arc of Massachusetts.
The Arc is a national organization that advocates for individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities. I love the feeling of knowing that my work is making a difference in other people’s lives.
Why did you choose Simmons?
I am proud to say that I am a second-generation Simmons alum. I have always been inspired by my mom and what a strong, confident, and independent woman she is. After hearing her reminisce about her days as a Shark and sitting in on classes, I was inspired to follow in her footsteps and make Simmons part of my story too.
You have 30 seconds to showcase Simmons to a prospective student. What would you say to them?
Simmons College will help you discover your best you, find friendships that will last a lifetime, acquire a varied and marketable skillset, build a network of support from faculty and business leaders, and gain the confidence and encouragement to tackle anything you dream possible.
What were your first impressions of Simmons, and what were your impressions upon graduating?
When I first started at Simmons, I recognized how small the classes were, its diversity, and the fact that it was right in the heart of Boston. After graduating, I now realize the importance and uniqueness of these characteristics. Having small classes allowed me to ask more questions and get all the answers I needed while building relationships with professors served as a support as I moved into the workforce.
The college’s diversity expanded my world and introduced me to wonderful people. Being right in Boston encouraged me to explore and find new interests that I enjoyed at Simmons and beyond, including my hobby as an autograph collector.
What does Simmons mean to you?
Although I enjoyed my Simmons experience immensely while I was there, I did not fully realize what Simmons meant and would mean to me until after I graduated.
I continue to realize as each year passes that Simmons provided the tools and instilled the confidence in me that I can do anything. It also gave me an association with an amazing group of people who are, in small and large ways, changing the world.