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You may already have corresponded with Lucas, or maybe you will in January. He’s our new(ish) Admissions Counselor, a position that starts, but hardly ends, with managing our online application platform. Today, he introduces himself. If you do end up speaking or corresponding with him, be sure to ask about his golf game.
“Who is this guy?” you might be thinking to yourself. Well, it has been almost three months since I first joined the Fletcher admissions team, and I figured that it’s about time I said “Hello” to all our dedicated blog readers and introduced myself. I’m Lucas Harty – born and bred in Buffalo, NY and, while I will always call Western New York home, Boston truly has a special place in my heart. I did my bachelor’s degree in economics at Boston College where I was lucky enough to spend time studying in Paris, Berlin, and Mexico City. My time spent abroad and my courses in economics helped to stoke a real curiosity in the systems that different countries use to educate their citizens, the role that education plays in providing social mobility, and the challenges to increasing access to education across the globe. I followed this interest to the University of Pennsylvania where I recently graduated with my master’s in education, and I’m excited to be part of the Office of Admissions at an institution with such a global and distinct community.
So what else do you need to know about me? Some of my favorite pastimes include hiking and kayaking, or skiing in the winter. I’m an aspiring golfer (though my short game is atrocious) and I’ll take any opportunity I can to stop in a bookstore and add another book to my endlessly growing “To Read” list. Here at Fletcher you can find me in my corner of the Office of Admissions – I’ve only been here a few months but I’m quickly learning why Fletcher is such a special place. Don’t hesitate to stop by to chat or just say “Hi!”
The pre-session students are here, but they’re too busy and/or new to be making news, which leaves me grasping for a topic for today’s post. I’ve reached into my magic bag of possible blog topics and pulled out a few notes on staff and faculty.
First, from one of the monthly updates we receive, news of a staff member who is also a Fletcher graduate:
Mieke van der Wansem, F90, associate director of educational programs at the Fletcher School’s Center for International Environment and Resource Policy, was senior faculty at an intensive week-long executive education program, the International Programme on the Management of Sustainability. The course, held every June in the Netherlands in partnership with the Sustainability Challenge Foundation, is designed for mid-career professionals mostly from developing countries. The training focuses on the mutual gains approach to negotiation and consensus building for sustainable development conflicts. The goal of the trainings is for professionals from many different sectors to be better able to achieve sustainable development goals through effective stakeholder engagement and negotiation.
Mieke conducts several training sessions each year, and was in South Africa earlier in the spring for a similar program. The Center for International Environment and Resource Policy has a particularly active research and practice agenda.
Next, a Tufts Now story about the (relatively) new director of the The Fares Center for Eastern Mediterranean Studies, Dr. Nadim Shehadi. In the article, he notes that The Fares Center is important “because profound misunderstanding of the complexities of the Middle East is prolonging suffering and violence. The center could help frame discussion about the region, taking advantage of the Fletcher School’s international reputation and its alumni, who are influential in every corner of the globe.”
In faculty news, last spring, a student pointed out that Professor Elizabeth Prodromou, F83, testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Foreign Affairs (Helsinki Commission), “speaking on genocide denial, ‘memoricide’ and the industry of denialism. The Congressman who spoke after her mentioned that he’s never heard the subject explained so well.”
And, finally, Professor Jeswald Salacuse sent us a link to a long video interview with a Hawaii television program that he did on his most recent book, Negotiating Life. The interview is interesting, and Fletcher is one of the stars. It originally ran some time back, but I’m making up for having never included it on the blog.
Many Fletcher students arrive with families in tow, and Kristen provides the perfect summer (or fall) suggestion for them.
My summer might be slightly less adventurous than some of my colleagues, but with good reason: I have two young children, so every day is its own special kind of adventure. However, we still manage to have a lot of fun as Boston is a wonderful city for families. Some of our top choices:
We’ll hit our favorite spray parks (parks with sprinklers) frequently — Artesani and Beaver Brook. A new one on our must-go list is Palmer State Park, which has both great hiking and sprinklers for the kids.
There are quite a few public (free!) pools around, but one of my favorites for easy accessibility (right on the red line of the T) is the McCrehan Memorial Pool in Cambridge. Also near to campus is Dilboy pool, which offers season passes.
We also like going to nearby beaches. Sandy Beach (also called Shannon Beach is close and easy for a quick drive. For a longer day, Wingaersheek Beach is perfect for kiddos, as the water is calm and shallow. Followed up by a visit to a local clam shack, this is the perfect New England day.
Next, Christine describes a great place that should be on everyone’s weekend list for September/October.
Summer in Boston is my favorite time of year. Yes, all the seasons are lovely (even winter has its charms), but summer in the city really reminds me why I have made this place my home. I have a long list of favorite activities, but one that is high on my list is the South End Open Market @SOWA. SOWA Market is the trifecta of summer fun with an arts market, farmer’s market, and food truck area all rolled into one convenient location. The best part may be that the market is open until October, so you can stretch out the summer fun into the school year! (For your local knowledge, SOWA refers to South of Washington Street.)
In the arts market you can find all sorts of handmade treasures by local artists. I am particularly fond of the artists who make greeting cards and other paper products. The farmer’s market is home to local produce, fresh pasta, meat and eggs, and plenty of other confections. I am always finding something new to indulge in! Make sure you bring some cash and re-useable bags. While even the smallest farm stands seem to take credit cards now, it is always good to have some cash on hand.
The food truck section alone is worth the trip. My favorites include: The Dining Car, The Bacon Truck, and Tenoch (which also has a brick and mortar location right by Fletcher and another one on the way!). The trucks are set up so you can wander through and eat as much or as little as you like.
Hope you find some time to spend at SOWA! You can always stop by the office to share any new treats you get!
Those are the summer suggestions from my Admissions pals. Because there’s still plenty of time for me to offer my own picks this summer, I won’t provide a specific suggestion today. But what I’d like to point out is that Boston, and even the “greater Boston area” is a wonderfully manageable size. Within an hour are coastal locations as diverse as Hampton Beach (Dan’s pick) and Wingaersheek Beach (Kristen’s rather calmer suggestion). There’s theater in the round (Laurie’s North Shore Music Theatre) and theater outdoors (Liz’s Shakespeare on the Common). Even students who regularly get out into the community will barely scratch the surface of all there is to do here.
Continuing the theme from yesterday’s post, the Admissions team shares its favorite summer locations.
First up today is Dan, who rarely demonstrates such an alarming familiarity with reality TV, as he describes his favorite local beach location. Because who doesn’t want to get to the beach in the summer?!
Something I’ve learned from being married to a New Jersey native is that you can get the girl out of New Jersey, but you can’t get the Jersey out of the girl (believe me, I’ve tried). As such, our household gets an occasional hankering for some boardwalk time. While it’s technically possible to GTL and reach the Jersey Shore from Massachusetts in a weekend, it’s a long trip that would leave barely enough time for a fist pump or two, arrest, booking, arraignment, bail, and release while still making it back by Sunday evening.
Fortunately there’s a closer, and weirder, New England alternative. Only an hour from Tufts, New Hampshire’s Hampton Beach, is “the busiest beach community in the state” according to Wikipedia. That may be a dubious honor given the extent of the limited New Hampshire coastline, but not for nothin’, as its Jersey compatriots would say.
Hampton’s stretch of boardwalk isn’t huge; maybe two or three blocks. What it lacks in size, though, it makes up for in age. It only takes a few minutes’ stroll to feel like you’re more likely to bump into Nucky Thompson than The Situation. While you won’t find roller coasters or amusement piers here, you will find an assortment of creaky wood-floored arcades featuring some of the 80s’ most popular video games, shooting galleries that look like they employ live rounds, and basketball shot contests that use actual peach baskets (okay, I made that last one up). The overarching aesthetic is amusement park hand-me-down chic.
Lest this seem like a backhanded burn of our northern neighbors, I’ll emphasize that Hampton Beach is, in my view, about as pleasant as a boardwalk can get. It’s close, small, and manageable, has some historical flavor and, best of all, it generally lacks the aggressive crassness of most other boardwalks. Doable in even a half day, it’s also loaded with great seafood joints, probably worth the trip by themselves.
After the beach, what could be better than the ice cream options that Theresa describes?
Lazy summer days lounging out back on the deck always bring back floods of childhood memories involving evening ice cream. This was especially true the other evening, when somewhere off in the near distance, I could hear calliope music from an ice cream truck drifting through air as the truck made its way toward our street. Back in the day, on any given summer evening, nearly all the kids in the neighborhood flocked to that white, stickered ice cream truck like little moths to a square flame — waiting for our turn to pick out our favorite ice cream treat. I always liked the lemon Italian ice. It was cool and refreshing and took my mind off the mosquitoes biting my legs. Just as most of us had reached the bottom of our cones or cups of ice cream, our mothers would urge us back inside and away from the mosquitoes.
So many wonderful summers have come and gone since then. Fast forward 25 years and oddly, things are only slightly different. The calliope music still plays as kids flock to the ice cream truck. They smile and laugh while waiting for their turn to pick out their favorite ice cream treat, and not long after that, the other Moms and I, who have been chatting, start urging our kids back inside.
Ice cream trucks can be hard to find, but ice cream is always a local favorite. If there’s no truck near you, try J.P. Licks, right near campus in Davis Square, or head further down to block to iYO Café. From a truck or a storefront, you can’t go wrong with ice cream in the summer.
Summer is when I like to ask my Admissions pals to share a little about themselves on the blog. Naturally, when we’re writing in the summer, we lean toward writing about the summer. My assignment for the team, then, was to describe a favorite summer activity — one that incoming students might pursue next summer, or even in the spring and fall.
First up, Liz, who has written about what is likely to be my own activity this evening.
One of my favorite things to do each summer is attend one of the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company’s free performances of Shakespeare on the Common. Shakespeare on the Common, taking place in the historic park at the heart of the city, has been a Boston summer tradition since 1996, and has featured many different plays. It’s a great opportunity to get outside and enjoy some culture with friends. You can simply pull up a blanket or beach chair, bring your own picnic, and enjoy a fantastic evening of theater! Moreover, I really like the mission of the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, which is “dedicated to performing the works of William Shakespeare in vital and contemporary productions that are presented free of charge to Boston’s diverse communities, and to educating Boston’s youth not only about Shakespeare but also about their own potential for creativity.” If you have the opportunity, definitely check it out! This summer’s production is King Lear, which will run from July 22-August 9.
Next, Laurie suggests another option for area theater lovers.
If you love musical theater, here is something to consider in the Boston area. My family has had season tickets to the North Shore Music Theatre (NSMT) for many, many years. There are small regional theaters of very high quality all over New England and the North Shore Music Theatre is one of the best! NSMT is located in Beverly, Massachusetts — 23 miles north of Tufts and approximately a 30-40 minute drive. It has been around since 1955 and has a great reputation. Plus, ticket prices are reasonable (and parking is free!). Renovated in 2005, the theater is round with a center stage and has 1500 seats — there’s not a bad seat in the house! In addition, the actors make use of the entire space so you really feel part of the show. The 2015 season started off with Dream Girls — always a crowd pleaser! The rest of the 2015-16 season includes Saturday Night Fever the Musical, Billy Elliot, and Sister Act. Each summer NSMT produces a great family show as well. This year it was Shrek the Musical. I took my four-year-old nephew, who was able to sit still through the entire show! The NSMT season always ends with an amazing production of A Christmas Carol, a great show that coincides with the end of Fletcher’s fall semester. Check it out!
Yesterday afternoon, students, professors, and staff members joined in a celebration of the decades-long Fletcher career of our registrar, Nora Moser McMillan. Nora worked first as assistant registrar and then registrar, with a break between the two to teach English in Japan through the JET program. As all the speakers at the celebration attested, she has made a profound mark on the school’s programs and the paths of our students. Lucky for us, she’s really not leaving Fletcher just yet. She’ll continue in a part-time capacity for a while, smoothing the transition to her successor. Meanwhile, she will also have extra time to enjoy the summer with her adorable son, who joined us for the celebration yesterday.
And today I’d like to introduce our new registrar (technically: registrar and manager of student academic programs), who is well known to us — Mary Dulatre, a 2012 Fletcher graduate. While she was a MALD student, Mary worked as the student assistant in the Registrar’s Office, so her new post is a type of homecoming. But for the past three years, she hasn’t been far away, working a few floors above us as assistant director of student affairs. A happy example of a graduate who found her passion at Fletcher — even if it was a different passion than the one she expected to find.
Before Fletcher, Mary was a Fulbright scholar in the Philippines, a client case worker for AmeriCorps in San Diego, a community development specialist with the Peace Corps in Honduras, and a community outreach specialist for the American Red Cross in San Diego. We’re looking forward to working with her in her new position, right across the hall from Admissions.
First, a note. I’ve received emails from quite a few people in the last two weeks wondering when they’ll hear from us with the decision on their applications. The answer is: not for a while! We’re still mid-process — seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, for sure, but far from done. Hang tight!
Liz and I are both at home reading today. More accurately, Liz is reading, and I’m reading when I’m not writing a blog post. Dan and I have already told you about our reading days. Today the rest of the staff chimes in, survey style. (Thank you to Kristen for providing the survey questions!)
Do you listen to music while reading?
Christine: Yes, something that is not distracting, though. Taylor Swift’s “1989” has been great background noise! I’m also a fan of the iPod Genius mixes for anything moody and 90s (Matchbox 20, Goo Goo Dolls, etc.).
Kristen: On and off. I find that some well-timed lively Latin American pop can help get me through a long afternoon.
Laurie: I find music very distracting when I am reading applications (or reading anything for that matter). However, I do like the steady hum of my space heater. The extra heat is a real plus as well.
Liz: I actually don’t. I like silence, though sometimes a little background noise is nice. More recently I’ve been reading during “snow days,” when Tufts has closed due to inclement weather, which normally is a rare occasion. Given the weather, lately I’ve had the news on in the background while reading to keep up with the storm! But usually, I don’t have any music, etc.
Favorite beverage to accompany your reading?
Kristen: Coffee, followed by some more coffee and perhaps a cup of coffee after that.
Laurie: I alternate between hot and cold beverages all day long. Coffee in the morning (of course), cold water throughout the day, and then tea in the afternoon.
Liz: This depends a bit on the time of day! I’m a big fan of hydration, so I tend to have a large water bottle that I refill throughout the day. In the morning I also will have a nice hot cup of coffee, and in the afternoon, I sometimes will make a fruit smoothie. It breaks up the day and is a nice treat to look forward to!
Christine: Water, always water. Sometimes a nice hot tea when the mood strikes.
Pet peeve while reading applications?
Laurie: My biggest pet peeve is when I misspell or mistype words when I am writing my notes. Our new system does not have an auto correct and I always need to go back and edit my work.
Liz: My biggest pet peeve when reading is when an applicant doesn’t follow directions or pay attention to details within the essays. We’ve seen it all as readers — including applicants whose essays are written for other schools. A word to the wise: stick to the word limit, answer the questions we have asked and read through your essays to ensure you’ve uploaded the essay for the right school! Attention to detail is important, and is something we keep our eye on.
Christine: Applicants not filling out their academic information completely.
Kristen: A cold room and a shoddy application.
What incentive do you give yourself to help make it through a pile of applications?
Liz: For me, my incentive is always food! I won’t let myself eat breakfast until I’ve read at least a few files on a long read day. The same thing is true for eating lunch or a snack. I always make a “hot” lunch on read days as well, since I don’t normally do that during the week. I usually will give myself a goal and when I meet that goal, my reward is a tasty treat.
Christine: If I get through five applications, I can take a stretch break. If I get through 10, I can have a snack break!
Kristen: Coffee. Is the coffee thing coming through?
Laurie: Reading days are all about incentives! Throughout the day I set reading goals to meet before getting a drink, eating lunch, moving to a new reading location, taking a shower, etc.
Your reading “mascot”?
Christine: Not really a mascot, but reading means I can cuddle up in my favorite blanket on the couch, and have the fire on when it is chilly. It is especially idyllic when the snow is falling, which has happened a lot this reading season!
Kristen: I’ve got two little kiddos, so seeing them (or even a picture of them) livens up the day.
Laurie: I do not have any mascots, but I do need my reading space organized to maximize comfort and efficiency before I can start. I need pillows, a blanket, a place for my water, a stool for my feet and a surface for my mouse. I rarely read at a desk or on a table because it is uncomfortable and slows me down.
Liz: I unfortunately don’t have a reading mascot; I do however have a favorite chair I sit in with my lap top. The key to a great reading day is yummy food, a good lap desk, a warm blanket and cozy socks. Reading days are one of my favorite things about my job! We get to learn all about amazing applicants and help build, what we hope will be, a truly remarkable Fletcher class!
Since none of us have mascots that can top Murray for cuteness, here he is again:
Since Christine has been my partner in the summer blog series, it seemed only fitting to close off the intros together.
Christine Richardson, Admissions Coordinator
Christine moved up from the Staff Assistant position less than a year ago, and she makes sure everything is working perfectly behind the scenes of the application.
Where did you grow up? Andover, MA (just north of the city and home to the famed Phillips Academy)
What is your favorite place you have traveled to? My favorite place is a tie between London and Mykonos. I spent six months living in London during college and it became a second home for me. But nothing compared to the sunny, relaxed lifestyle on the Greek island of Mykonos!
What is the number one spot on your travel wish list? East Africa! I am a lion fanatic and it is my dream to see lions in their natural habitat.
What is your favorite food? Chocolate Chip Cookies
What book are you currently reading? The Silkworm, by Robert Galbraith (aka J.K. Rowling)
What is the number one place (Boston-area or on campus) you most hope Fletcher students will visit during their short time here? Fenway Park! I am a huge Red Sox fan and I think Fenway is one of the most historic, exciting spots in the area. There is nothing like the smell of Fenway Franks on game day! The best part is you can take tours year round and learn all of the great history and mystery surrounding the park. Go Red Sox!
Jessica Daniels, Senior Associate Director of Admissions
I’m the office liaison to the PhD program, and I write/edit the blog. (But you knew that already.)
Where did you grow up? I grew up in the town of Merrick, on Long Island, New York. After 25 years in the Boston area, just about the only thing I still miss are the vast white-sand Long Island beaches.
What is your favorite place you have traveled to? There are so many ways to answer this question. What’s my favorite place that I have traveled to and lived in? (Beijing, China) …my favorite place to travel to and see family? (London, UK) …my favorite nearby place to spend a summer week? (Eastham, MA). But I think the answer to the question as it’s actually worded is Iceland. I had a wonderful trip there with my family a few years ago. The scenery is beautiful, the people are nice, the culture is special. What more could you ask?
What is the number one spot on your travel wish list? Again, I could name a bunch of places. We had wanted to go to the Azores this summer. There’s a direct flight from Boston and it’s super easy, but it didn’t work out this time. More of a “wish” on my wish list is Cuba. I’d like to visit before it becomes a typical tourist destination for Americans.
What is your favorite food? Should I say roasted vegetables, and act all healthy? Or should I just say ice cream? Hmmm. Let’s go with ice cream.
What book are you currently reading? I’m currently reading The Guts, by Roddy Doyle. I start off slow reading Doyle’s dialect (I need to hear the Irish in my head), but I’ll quickly pick up the pace.
What is the number one place (Boston-area or on campus) you most hope Fletcher students will visit during their short time here? The Boston area was the home for several U.S. presidents, and a short trip to Quincy (looks like “quin-see,” but often pronounced “quin-zee” by the locals) lands you at two of them. John Adams (2nd U.S. president) and his son, John Quincy Adams (6th president), both had their roots in a remarkably small corner of the town. It’s now a National Historical Park and well worth the trip.
And that wraps up the introduction of the members of the Admissions team. We’ll close with a photo of the team.Next time you call, be sure to ask us about our favorite food or travel location!
Continuing to introduce the staff through their answers to Christine’s questions, we turn today to Liz, Theresa, and Kristen, who are found at the alphabetical end of our staff list. Certain trends are already emerging — staff from New Hampshire and an interest in Iceland, for two examples.
Liz Wagoner, Associate Director of Admissions
Liz works with the applicants and admitted future students in the Map Your Future program, and also frequently reads applications to the MIB program.
Where did you grow up? This is actually a tough question as I have sort of grown up all over! I was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, spent my early years in Wyoming, and have lived in various locals all around New England for the majority of my life. Ultimately I think of Peterborough, NH as where I’m from, as I spent most of my time there.
What is your favorite place you have traveled to? I have several favorites, but it has to be Hong Kong.
What is the number one spot on your travel wish list? Nepal.
What is your favorite food? My favorite food in the whole world is steamed clams, otherwise known as “steamers.” For those who don’t know, steamers are a small soft-shell clam, typically harvested in New England and served with butter. They are definitely an acquired taste, but I sure love them. Luckily for me, they are a New England staple and can be found at most seafood restaurants, especially in the summer!
What book are you currently reading? I just finished a great beach read called Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly McCreight. It was the perfect novel to read while on vacation and had some nice twists that kept me turning the page.
What is the number one place (Boston-area or on campus) you most hope Fletcher students will visit during their short time here? This is more of a touristy thing that I’m going to recommend, which I would normally shy away from, but I would truly suggest that everyone take a Boston Duck Tour. I admit they can be a little cheesy, but it really is a great way to see the city of Boston and learn some history and fun facts all at the same time. It’s family friendly and, since it’s a pretty short tour, students can soon get back to studying, networking, and taking advantage of all the great things Fletcher has to offer!
Theresa Tomic, Admissions Staff Assistant
Theresa is the face of the Admissions Office. You’ll meet her when you visit, and you may talk to her when you call.
Where did you grow up? My earliest years were spent in Europe and later in the central Massachusetts area.
What is your favorite place you have traveled to? Iceland. It’s quite chic and cosmopolitan, and they have no reptiles!
What is the number one spot on your travel wish list? One day I would like to visit Kenya.
What is your favorite food? Favorite food has to be Asian!!
What book are you currently reading? Top Secret Twenty-One: A Stephanie Plum Novel
What is the number one place (Boston-area or on campus) you most hope Fletcher students will visit during their short time here? The Tisch Library is a wonderful place to visit. You can find practically everything you need for academic writing, and the view of Boston from the roof is fantastic.
Kristen Zecchi, Associate Director of Admissions and of the Master of International Business Program
Kristen wears two hats — she manages both MIB admissions and student services for the program.
Where did you grow up? Like Liz (and so many Fletcher students!), it’s hard to pinpoint, as we moved around a bit. I was born in Western Massachusetts, moved to Texas, and then to Colorado, which is what I still think of as home. Between Colorado and Boston, I’ve also lived in Providence, RI; Chicago, IL; Houston, TX; Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Sevilla, Spain … so I feel at home with Fletcher’s very international student community.
What is your favorite place you have traveled to? Buenos Aires is the city nearest to my heart after having lived there, but as a tourist my favorites have been Mexico City and Istanbul. (Note to applicants: I am clearly not following the prompts here and am cheating by listing several places; be more diligent in your own essays! :))
What is the number one spot on your travel wish list? Cambodia.
What is your favorite food? Unoriginal, and very American, but I’d have to say a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. It’s an American classic, and I’m always happy to have one!
What book are you currently reading? I just finished The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt and am about to start The Thing Around Your Neck, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. I’ve read everything else she’s written, and this is the last on the list. My favorite contemporary writer!
What is the number one place (Boston-area or on campus) you most hope Fletcher students will visit during their short time here? Again, I’ll cheat here by suggesting two natural wonders, one close to campus on one farther afield. The Middlesex Fells are a mere 10 minutes from campus and offer 2,500 acres of forest, hiking trails and peace. It’s a city gem. About a 45-minute drive from campus is Boston’s north shore, and Crane Beach is a stunning, wide sandy beach that I love.
It has been a while since I have organized the Admissions Team members to introduce themselves and we’ve had quite a few staff changes since then. My co-blogger Christine drew up a list of questions that each of us has answered, and I’ll be sharing the responses she assembled for the rest of this week. I’ll provide each staff member’s title (not that we’re particularly title driven around here), and a quick note on an area of specialty. All of us work on everything, to some extent, but there are some areas where one of us is more involved than the others. I’ll start with Dan, the one member of the team who is a Fletcher grad!
Dan Birdsall, Associate Director of Admissions
Dan is the Office liaison to the LLM program. 2011 Fletcher MALD graduate.
Where did you grow up? Home to luminaries including NBA journeyman Donyell Marshall, Super Bowl runner-up Kerry Collins, and Harry “Rabbit” Angstrom, Reading, Pennsylvania has the highest share of citizens living in poverty in the U.S., according to the 2010 census. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t a great place to grow up, though. One bite of a famous “split” from the Unique Pretzel Company will surely make you regret having been raised anywhere else.
What is your favorite place you have traveled to? El Altar, Sangay National Park, Ecuador, so named because the spectacular scenery will make you find religion.
What is the number one spot on your travel wish list? Why not Alaska?
What is your favorite food? I imagine I could eat Pad Thai nearly every day and not get sick of it.
What book are you currently reading? Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power, by Steve Coll. I’m very relieved to have been reading something “Fletchery” when answering these questions!
What is the number one place (Boston-area or on campus) you most hope Fletcher students will visit during their short time here? Trusting my colleagues to recommend the other major must-sees in the area, I’m going with the Comedy Studio in Harvard Square, on the 3rd floor of the Hong Kong restaurant. Avoid the (in)famous scorpion bowls of the 2nd floor bar at all costs, and head upstairs for a…let’s say “interesting” experience, at the very least. Of the ten or so comedians you’ll catch on a given night, one or two are likely to be fairly polished professionals, with the rest a mix of amateurs, newbies, and (if you’re lucky) some experimental, avant-garde weirdos. It beats an all-nighter in Ginn, at least!
Laurie Hurley, Director of Admissions
As the Admissions Director, Laurie has her hand in just about everything we do. She’s a particular data hound, and crunches and re-crunches admissions numbers throughout the year.
Where did you grow up? I grew up in Nashua, New Hampsire, but have spent most of my life living in Massachusetts. While I love so many international destinations, I am a New Englander through and through. I love Boston, spending weekends in Maine, and exploring the rest of New England.
What is your favorite place you have traveled to? One of my favorite places in the world is the Tufts European Center in Talloires, France — located on the shores of Lake Annecy at the foot of the French Alps in the Haute-Savoie region of France (bordered by Italy and Switzerland). Fletcher hosts an annual alumni symposium in Talloires in early June.
What is the number one spot on your travel wish list? It changes every week, but right now the number one spot on my travel list is Iceland. I hope to get there soon, as it is a quick trip from Boston.
What is your favorite food? It is so hard to pick a favorite food because I love so many things. At this writing I am craving Greek food from one of my favorite restaurants near Tufts — the Greek Corner.
What book are you currently reading? I am currently reading Sons and Lovers by D.H. Lawrence, a classic I somehow missed reading earlier in life. At my daughter’s request, I am reading Divergent by Veronica Roth as well.
What is the number one place (Boston-area or on campus) you most hope Fletcher students will visit during their short time here? Fletcher students must visit the North End in Boston before graduating. The North End is one of Boston’s most historic neighborhoods and home to dozens of outstanding Italian restaurants.
More introductions coming tomorrow!
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