This past week, I sat down with my teammate, classmate and friend, Claire Dougherty '20, to talk about some of the things she loves about Dartmouth. Claire is from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is a Geography major and Arabic minor. On campus, Claire is a member of the Cross Country and Track and Field teams and a tour guide for the Admissions Office. She has conducted research in the Geography department and studied abroad last summer in Morocco.
- No. 1
Why did you decide to come to Dartmouth?
“My process in deciding to come to Dartmouth was a little different because I was a recruited athlete. I decided earlier, with a couple of different factors playing into it. That being said, there were a lot of different schools out there that made a lot more sense on paper than Dartmouth did – they were closer to home, they were also good academic schools and I would get athletic scholarship money. However, there was something that always took me back to Dartmouth. I realized it was okay to choose this place because I love it as a whole. I came on a visit here and I immediately felt at home with the people. They were as goofy as I am! When I first visited Dartmouth, I had a list of ten questions that I made sure to ask. I had an idea in my head of what I wanted those answers to be and Dartmouth was the only school where the answers lined up with what I wanted the answers to be.
I absolutely love the physical space and being outside. It’s huge for me as a runner to have 150 miles of trail surrounding our campus. It’s “cool” to be outside here – people like studying outside in the spring and going on big outdoor trips whenever they can. This is also corny, but I think you can feel the sense of community pretty quickly here. Everyone seems to know each other when you walk around. I love that I can just say “what’s up” to people that I pass, people are happy to see each other.”
- No. 2
What would you tell a prospective student about Dartmouth?
“I guess one thing I would tell a prospective student would be about the incredible relationships we have with our professors here. I had mono for almost a whole term and spent most of my time in Dick’s House. My professor came to Dick’s House to personally give me the 10 lectures that I missed and administer a quiz. He kept the class up to date with how I was feeling and when I returned to class, I got a round of applause. I think those relationships are really special.
The weird thing about Dartmouth is that everything they tell you on your admissions visit is real. As a geographer, space and place are really important to me. Space takes on a meaning and I think it’s developed by the spirit of its owner. It becomes a being itself and that must be respected. It will give to you if you give to it. That’s been very indicative of my time here. Dartmouth offers a combination of things I have never found anywhere else. The people here care and they are passionate. This place pulses around us and people care about it. Traditions here are huge, and people have felt this way and will feel this way for a long time.
There's some sort of extra spark of joy that you can find here. And I think that it expresses itself in the goofiness and the willingness of people to check in with each other. That sounds corny, but I think it is really true. I love it.”