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Thursday, February 11, 2010

Catching up with ... Nicolai Lundy 09C

Nicolai Lundy 09C is one of the newest additions to the Emory College Office of Admission. A native of Denver, Lundy moved to Atlanta in 2005 to attend Emory. As a student, Lundy was a member of the Student Alumni Association (SAA), co-founder of Greeks Go Green, and co-captain of the men's track & field team. He served as president of Alpha Tau Omega, and was also a tour guide for the college.

Upon graduating from Emory, Lundy received the University’s highest student honor – the Marion Luther Brittain Award – and began working as an admission counselor at the Emory College Office of Admission.

He recently spoke with the Emory Alumni Association's (EAA) Drew Dotson, coordinator of regional programs and here's what he had to say.

DD: How did you learn about Emory?
NL: Being from Colorado – a state with a handful of Emory freshmen every year – I’ve asked myself the same thing. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was a diligent college researcher. I made spreadsheet comparisons of all my schools; I read all of the college books out there; I sought suggestions from people I respected. I even liked reading all of those pamphlets and shiny pieces of paper that you get in the mail. Looking back, it’s a good thing that I was so proactive because an Emory rep never came to my high school and I didn’t know anyone that had gone to Emory. As I brutally whittled my list down to a quasi-reasonable number of applications (seven), I made sure that Emory was never removed.

DD:What made you choose Emory?
NL: April 2005 came around and I had received my Emory admission letter, among others, but I had never been to visit campus. I knew that I couldn’t make a decision without seeing the buildings and meeting the people. Complicating matters, my AP English teacher was ruthless. He wouldn’t excuse an absence so close to the AP exam. With track meets on the weekends, I was left with only one possible day – the Senior Class Ditch Day. I missed my tour and information session, so I approached students on my own. There was such amazing diversity! The students and staff were all so hospitable and intriguing. I remember sitting on the quad on one of the white benches when I made my decision. It felt right. All the stats were there, like the small class size, but it was also a place where I felt comfortable, which wasn’t easy for a high school student on a college campus.

DD: What did you enjoy most about your experience here?
NL: I would get this question a lot as a tour guide. My answer changed over the years, but as I saw more and more semesters whiz by, I formed closer and more meaningful bonds with the people who live and work and study here. I met people who were unlike anyone I knew at home. They opened my eyes in a way that a textbook can’t. As early as the first month of school, I went to a celebratory dinner at the end of Ramadan. Reading about the Muslim faith is one thing, but seeing people practice it and tasting a little bit of it yourself does so much more to help you appreciate the similarities and the differences. The people here, and the things you stand to learn from them, have been what I love about Emory.

DD: Why did you choose to work in the Office of Admission?
NL: It was 2009. I was a philosophy major. I had a harder time landing a job than finding Waldo. When the admission office wanted to hire me, I wasn’t about to say no! Being an admission counselor offered a chance to continue something that I loved in college. At the end of every tour I gave, no matter how stressed out I had been beforehand, I felt this rush, this high. It felt better than winning one of my races. Having a meaningful role in the life of a young adult (in this case making college decisions) does that to you, I think. For the previous two years, I had seen some of my older friends go on to take jobs that they thought they would love, but it didn’t really work out for them. Luckily my experience was different. It started out as a one-year gig, but it’s hard for me to leave when I’m having so much fun. I want to sign up for another year.

1 comment:

  1. That is a great tribute to Emory and a great tribute to doing your own research in finding a school that fits you. Not just picking a school because everybody else does!