- Photography by Lance Holt
Alternatively schooled her whole life, Zoe Martin—an anthropology major—liked how personalized her education had always been. “I was used to small class sizes and close relationships with my teachers; Southwestern definitely offered a continuation of that learning environment,” she says.
“As I began visiting different colleges and universities, I found myself coming back to Southwestern over and over again.”
Once on campus, Zoe discovered not only a passion for anthropology, but an opportunity to take a variety of classes — from anthropology to music to macroeconomics. “I took hand-forming ceramics classes during my sophomore year. It was exciting to create and collaborate on interdisciplinary art projects, such as my set of environmental justice-themed shot glasses and the campus Empty Bowls Project.”
She also found time to pursue a variety of interests on and off campus. Zoe began playing the harp and became involved in Students for Environmental Activism and Knowledge (SEAK), the SU Community Garden and Student Foundation. She also spent time in Austin playing recreational flat-track roller derby for the Texas Rollergirls’ Rec-N-Roller derby league and interning at The Parish, a downtown music venue, and at Transmission Entertainment, an Austin music booking and production company.
Through it all, Zoe says, “I’ve become much more confident since my senior year of high school; my curiosity and adventurousness have continued to grow as I’ve pushed myself out of my comfort zone. I feel more comfortable now in my own skin.”
Zoe says the words of Richard Alpert—Remember, Be Here Now—reminded her to “be in the moment and reflect on why I was making certain choices. This advice helped me prioritize, make memories, maintain my sanity and have a lot of fun!”
What’s next? While she wants to compete in the premier Texas Rollergirls flat-track roller derby league, Zoe plans to “pay the bills” by pursuing her interests in ceramics, anthropology and environmentalism. “I believe my Southwestern Experience has prepared me with the enthusiasm, curiosity and work ethic that will be essential during these next steps.”
Currently working as retail and non-profit vendor coordinator for Austin-based Transmission Events on its annual, three-day music festival “Fun Fun Fun Fest,” Zoe is also busy developing her own Etsy business, “PeachedPlum,” named for one of her favorite harp songs.
Like a glove
A prospective student who is a good fit for Southwestern is one who wants to discover him or herself, take chances, have the ability to grow and change, is open to questioning and discovering, and is looking for diversity among his or her peers and professors.