Four Days of Philanthropy
Day Four: Greek Life
Meet Evan ’17
By any measure, Evan ’17 is a busy Trinity College student. Maybe you’ll find him working at his job in the Trinity College Health Center, or researching the psychology of adolescents alongside his professors, or editing The Trinity Tripod. Most likely, you’ll find him working hard at Pi Kappa Alpha, the fraternity where Evan serves as vice president. Evan is also the president of the Inter-Greek Council (IGC), the governing body of Greek life. The IGC executive board serves as a liaison between the Greek houses, represents Greek life to the Trinity administration, and governs the Greek community.
Evan is passionate about the lifelong connections and leadership opportunities that Pi Kappa Alpha has provided him. “Greek life is the best system to facilitate relationships between generations of Trinity students,” he says. Through the years, he’s reached out to generations of his fraternity brothers, advocating for the College and the community.
Someday, Evan hopes to go into diplomacy or the Foreign Service. His time at Pi Kappa Alpha and with his other activities have inspired him to be a better leader and listener. “My leadership opportunities have afforded me the wisdom to understand my strengths and shortcomings. It felt at times like a dry run for adult life.”
Evan is proud of Trinity, too. “We’re a part of New England’s history and culture. Our name carries weight and the promise that our graduates are first-rate. I would never deny that other institutions also offer a world-class education, but a Trinity degree offers that implicit trust of one of the country’s oldest and most respected colleges. We’re tried and true.”
Day Three: Legislative Internship Program
Meet Amanda ’18
Amanda ’18 has her sights set on big things. As a political science major, she hopes to one day be a news anchor or a political commentator. This past spring, she was fortunate to be a legislative intern to State Representative James Albis at the Connecticut General Assembly.
During a typical day, Amanda was involved in hands-on experiences with the political process. “I would research policy issues, participate in lobbyist conversations, attend agency meetings, track bills, and respond to constituents. Each day offered me the opportunity to learn how politicians weigh competing interests when making policy decisions.”
During a legislative internship, Trinity students get an up-close look at the political process that happens just down the street. “This program has provided me with newfound appreciation for Trinity’s location in the state capital. My knowledge of state government and the political process has been enhanced through real-world experience that cannot be replicated in the classroom.”
Outside the capitol building, Amanda has benefited from many other Trinity resources. “I am so grateful for the various activities that I have been involved with on campus. Trinity students are offered personalized attention from professors in small classes. You work among driven and dedicated people. Trinity alumni are easily accessible and are willing to help with externship, internship, or job advice.”
When thinking about her future, Amanda says, “I continue to be passionate about politics, news, and investigative journalism. My future goal is to obtain opportunities that allow me to express my political views and comments on current events.”
To learn more about the Legislative Internship Program, click here.
Day Two: Study-Away Program
Meet Stephen ’16
Head of the club baseball team and a member of the Italian Club, the Investment Club, and the Financial Aid Committee, Stephen ’16 valued college from his first days on campus. "Trinity College is great because of the close-knit community. The relationships you make with your professors are special and not something you would get at a big university."
When the opportunity to study in Italy arose, he jumped at the chance. By the time he completed the program, he said, it was his favorite college experience. "I recommend the program all the time. It is the best thing that I did during my four years, hands down. Being integrated into a city that you are not familiar with is something really extraordinary."
Trinity’s Rome campus is a favorite for study-away participants ― and it’s easy to see why. For the past 46 years, Trinity students have been spending a semester on an idyllic campus studying the civilizations and history that have shaped the world. Stephen is well aware of the great opportunity that Trinity afforded him. "Many people say they have visited Rome for a week, maybe two weeks, but I got to live there for five months and to integrate myself into the community."
Stephen will always remember the hardworking people at Trinity behind his experience. "The Trinity College staff members make the program so special. You become their friends, and they become yours. They are so welcoming, and the program has a real familial feel to it. They set up incredible trips for us that we will never forget. I still keep in touch with them today." Along with those friendships, Stephen now has a path to his future. “One of the biggest advantages that I'll have going into a job interview is that I speak fluent Italian. I’m interested in working with a global company and hope to eventually do business in Italy.”
To learn more about the study-away program, click here.
To learn more about Trinity’s Rome campus, visit this website.
Day 1: Community Learning Initiative
Meet Jennifer ’17
When Jennifer ’17 stepped into the class “Community Development Strategies,” taught by Melvyn Colon, visiting professor in urban studies, the then-sophomore had no idea that it would end up changing and shaping her career path. That class was her first foray into the Community Learning Initiative (CLI), a program where students and faculty work hand in hand with Greater Hartford organizations. Learning is a two-way street: Trinity students share their knowledge and resources while they learn to listen to what the community needs.
Civic engagement was not always Jennifer’s passion. “I changed my major to urban studies late in my sophomore year. CLI classes were a great opportunity to gain experience in urban development and environmental studies and to establish connections within the community.” She adds, “The CLI experiences enabled me to gain experience and skills that helped me to become more effective at affecting policy and being a leader. After each CLI experience, I was more confident and fearless, willing to talk to people about issues in a concise, coherent, and persuasive manner.”
Jennifer not only worked with inner-city organizations but also enacted real change. In spring 2015, she observed the urban landscape in Hartford neighborhoods ― the architectural styles, walkability, bus stops, and general ambiance. She presented her findings at a public Planning and Zoning Commission meeting in April 2015. Her reports were critical in the transit-oriented development zoning code.
It’s not only her work with CLI that has enriched Jennifer’s life but also her Trinity College experience as a whole. “Trinity has a very strong support network and really encourages students to become resilient. Trinity never gives up on its students,” says Jennifer.
For Jennifer, who serves as co-president of Open Airways for Schools, secretary of Engineers Without Borders, and secretary of Right To Play and is a future member of the inaugural International Student Mentor Program, the CLI is another vehicle that fuels her competitive nature to become the best student that she can be.
To learn more about the Community Learning Initiative,
Please make a gift today to support programs such as the Community Learning Initiative through the Trinity College Fund.
To learn more about the power of your philanthropy, read about Jess ’17 and her work with the College's Summer Research Program.
Trinity is a special place ― and not only from September through May. Just ask Jess ’17, a biomedical engineering major who will keep learning and growing all summer long as part of the College’s Summer Research program.
“I’ve always enjoyed science and math," says Jess. “I am majoring in biomedical engineering because it is exciting to explore and determine solutions to long-term problems. I want to help people in the future."
She won’t have to wait long. Starting in July, Jess will be teaching rising juniors at Hartford Magnet Trinity College Academy about the joys of science ― from DNA extraction to dissection. For Jess, the summer will focus on expanding what she has learned in the classroom and applying it beyond Trinity’s campus.
“It's not only about teaching but also about watching students develop a passion and interest in the sciences as I did,” says Jess. “Some students start out on day one having no idea what they want to do with their lives, and by the end of the program, they are determined to go to college and pursue interests they’ve newly discovered.”
When asked what she finds special about Trinity, Jess was enthusiastic. “Trinity is a campus that will get you where you want to go. If you want to start something, you have everything and everyone behind you. The Trinity network is amazing.”