Vitals

Hometown: Colorado Springs, Colorado
Major: Psychology
Minor: Journalism
Campus Involvements: Improv Club, Quiver Magazine editor, The Knox Student columnist and arts writer, Studio Theatre, Psi Chi Honor Society, Enharmonic Fire, Live-Lit Storytelling Club, McNair Scholar, writer/editor for the Office of Communications

Three Facts about Tricia

She is co-president of Improv Club—surprising when you consider she originally joined “because I didn’t like improv, and it was another way to get out of my comfort zone.” Though she was heavily involved in theatre in high school, she says focusing on improv “has made me—not confident, exactly—but brave. I’m more willing to be scared and act in spite of that.”

Her Myers-Briggs type is ENFJ (Extrovert Intuitive Feeling Judging).

Her Hogwarts house is Hufflepuff, though she likes to remind people that the Sorting Hat isn’t a scientifically valid form of personality testing.

How did you choose Knox?

I wanted to get out of my comfort zone, and that meant not going to a Christian university (though my parents’ Bible study leader still sends me transfer applications!) and not going to a school in Colorado. I was really drawn to the diversity of Knox—we all come from such different backgrounds. I think what we have in common is that we all want to be around other people who are also out of their comfort zones. Knox isn’t free of the divisions of the larger world, but on a one-on-one basis, we’re good at taking care of each other. I think we leave this place kinder.

Tell us about your summer research project in psychology.

You know how when someone puts the toilet paper roll on upside-down and you think, “Oh, that’s so wrong!”—versus when you hear that someone murdered someone else and you think, “Oh, that’s so wrong!” What I’m trying to do is figure out a way to quantify degrees of “wrongness.” Our moral judgments are incredibly subjective and can be affected by any number of factors, mostly selfish ones. We find it very wrong to insult one of “our people” but don’t find it nearly as wrong to insult “one of them.”

What do you hope to do after Knox?

There are so many things! I came into Knox interested in creative writing, international relations, and journalism and gravitated toward the psychology program. I’m probably going to pursue a doctorate in psychology. I feel a little impatient to get out there and start making a difference in the world, and in clinical psychology, you can start practicing as early as your second year of graduate school. It’s also a career with transferable skills, so perhaps I might spend time traveling around the world with Doctors Without Borders, and later, when/if I have a family, I’ll have the skills to find a job and set down roots.

Tricia Duke