Volunteers Spotlight: Julia Palmerino ’18 and Connor Durkin ’18

Name and Volunteer Position: Julia Palmerino, Senior Interviewer

Major: History and Music

Hometown: Sudbury, MA

What was something you looked forward to experiencing at Holy Cross?: I was excited to be a member of such a close-knit, passionate intellectual community.

What was most nerve-racking about the admissions process, and how was this resolved?: I was most nervous after I handed in my application and before I received my decision.  I spent those months making the most of my senior year, and also kept a close eye on admissions social media accounts so I would know the second that decisions would be released!

What was most worrisome about transitioning to college, and how was this remedied?: I was worried about living away from home, since I have lived in the same place my whole life.  I think getting involved and finding a community was very important for me in remedying that.  Follow your passions and you will find like-minded people!

What stands out to you the most in an applicant during their interview?: When applicants are really passionate about something, whether it is a class, an academic discipline, an activity, or something small, it is great to see people that care about something.  I want to know what makes you special!

What is something applicants shouldn’t do in an interview?: I get frustrated when it is clear that an applicant hasn’t even done basic research on the school.  Make sure you know simple information, and that your interests align with what Holy Cross offers in its curriculum.

What are you going to miss most about Holy Cross?: The campus!

What did you learn at Holy Cross that you will take with you into the world?: I think my time at Holy Cross has taught me the importance of context and perspective.  This is built into the liberal arts curriculum and the Jesuit ideals, but particularly as a history major I think I have discovered the importance of thinking critically and understanding different points of view on a given issue.  This broad approach to learning and thinking is something I will absolutely carry with me into the world.

What piece of advice would you like to share with prospective students?: Don’t be afraid to try new things, and soak up every opportunity Holy Cross gives you.

How do you feel you’ve grown over your time at Holy Cross?: I have always been very independent, but I think being a student here has solidified that for me.  From navigating roommate challenges, to studying abroad, to writing a thesis proposal, every aspect of my time here at Holy Cross has taught me how important it is to advocate for yourself and others.

What is your favorite thing about HC?: The professors.  They are consistently brilliant and wonderful people, and I have felt supported and challenged by each and every professor I have had in class.

What is the most exciting event you’ve attended this year?: Senior Ball! It was great to be with the whole senior class, especially since many of us were away last year.  It was a great way to kick off the celebration of our final year here!


Name and Volunteer Position: Connor Durkin, Tour Guide

Major: Psychology

Hometown: Merrimac, MA

What was something that stood out to you about Holy Cross?

The community. Everyone was so friendly! It’s like everyone knew each other.

What was most nerve-racking about the admissions process, and how was this resolved?

Probably getting ready for the interview process. But the senior interviewer was so nice, I had nothing to worry about once I stepped in their office!

What was something you looked forward to experiencing at Holy Cross?

I was really looking forward to working with the Psychology faculty, who helped me expand my thinking exponentially.

What was most worrisome about transitioning to college, and how was this remedied?

Finding a new group of friends. However, both Summer and Fall Orientation really helped me create new friendships. My best friend is someone I met during orientation!

The following questions are geared towards your experience as a current student.

What is your favorite thing about giving tours?

I really enjoy knowing that I am helping a prospective student make the extremely hard choice of choosing their next step in life.

What is your favorite spot on campus and why?

Probably Crossroads. For Pub Night, 10 Spot, the events held on the weekends, etc.

What do you like talking about most on campus tours?

SPUD and all the amazing opportunities that we are given in order to give back to the community.

What is the most common question you are asked on tours? What’s your response?

Probably, “Why did you choose Holy Cross?” My response? I feel like a valuable member of the community here. Holy Cross is a family in which I’m glad to be apart of.

Why did you want to be a tour guide?

I wanted to be able to help prospective students with their difficult choice of choosing their next step in life; choosing a college is big decision, and I want to help them out!

What have you learned from being a tour guide?

I’ve learned a lot about why I, personally, love Holy Cross. It’s given me an opportunity to reflect on my time here and share it with others.

What is your favorite thing about HC?

100% the community. The community aspect of Holy Cross is amazing, which definitely makes it stand out from other schools.

Once you graduate, what will you miss most about HC?

Seeing my best friends everyday.

What is one piece of advice you would like to give to prospective students?

Choosing a college is a big decision, one that shouldn’t be made lightly. Before you choose a school, make sure you love it! That love will only grow once you start your first semester until you graduate your senior year.


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