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What's New for the Class of 2022?

Seymour Library

The Class of 2022 celebrated the culmination of their Knox experience with a joyous Commencement celebration on June 5. We asked some of our Class of 2022 grads what their future plans are, how Knox impacted them, and what Knox’s future looks like. Here are some of their comments. 

Kyle Williams graduated cum laude with a degree in journalism and a minor in anthropology and sociology. This summer, he will intern at the Raleigh News and Observer newspaper in North Carolina. In the fall, he will attend graduate school at one of the top journalism schools in the country: Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications.

“The journalism major just started this year at Knox, so I really hope that 10 years from now, it’s one of the best departments at Knox. My favorite story that I wrote was about the Knox women’s soccer team when they won the conference championship this year.”

Charles Broomfield received a degree in computer science and integrative business and management. He graduated summa cum laude and is taking a position as a data analyst at the MITRE Corporation in McLean, Virginia. He previously worked as an intern for MITRE on a project at the Department of Homeland Security.

“The pandemic changed things, so I feel like we’ve seen two different Knox cultures. The new classes coming in have had opportunities to redefine the Knox culture; people are making new traditions. Some of the old traditions haven’t been passed down, but there’s a new culture being established and I think that’s kind of interesting.”

Olivia Palepoi graduated magna cum laude with an anthropology and sociology major and a minor in history. She’s pursuing a master’s degree in cultural anthropology at Purdue University, with plans for a career in academia.

“I want to become a professor and start an indigenous studies program at a university. I’m a Pacific Islander and my family comes from the island of Samoa. I was able to learn a lot at Knox. I met a lot of cool people that I wouldn’t have necessarily met before. It changed my world perspective as I was able to open myself up to new opportunities.” 

Jack Culbertson continued a family tradition when he received his degree in economics from Knox. His grandfather, Richard ’55, received a Knox degree, and his great-grandmother, Evelyn Fellingham Weiskopf ’23, also attended Knox. Jack is working as a commercial credit analyst at KeyBank in Cleveland, Ohio.

“Before I decided to come here, I was visiting and a custodian let me into a backroom where they kept awards, and I got to see some that my grandfather received. Before I even stepped on campus as a student, I had that experience. It shows how the Knox community values one another.”  

One of the Knox graduates headed for a job at the state Capitol, Sophia Bowley graduated summa cum laude with a public policy major and minors in political science and environmental studies. She is working as a full-time intern for the legislative staff in the legislations and appropriations unit in Springfield.

“We only had a brief time to see President McGadney in action. I’m curious to see the long-term impacts from having a new president. I’d like to see what President McGadney does over the next 10 years.” 

Daniel Bien majored in political science and environmental studies. The magna cum laude graduate is also headed to Springfield as an aide to U.S. Senator Dick Durbin. 

“When I return to Knox in the future, my first stop will be the Fiji House to visit my brothers. My second stop will be the Umbeck Science-Mathematics Center (SMC). I’m expecting SMC to be fully renovated in the future. As a double major in political science and environmental studies, it’s a place where I spent a lot of time.”

Kelly Fisk took a circuitous route to her degree, attending the University of Southern California (USC), before moving to Galesburg, running her own immigration consulting firm, and, eventually, working part-time at Knox while pursuing her degree. The magna cum laude graduate has a self-designed major in graphic and interactive design in art and business. She plans to work in user experience and product design, probably remotely, possibly with a start-up company. In the meantime, she’s continuing to work at Knox and with her StartUp Term team, which developed Benkyo, a Chrome extension that helps people focus on tasks.

"It never in a million years occurred to me to look at a small liberal arts college. But when the opportunity arrived for me to finish my degree here, I knew I'd be a fool not to take it. And I am so glad I did. My education at USC was amazing, but Knox is something truly special. The small, close-knit community of students, faculty, staff, and alumni have been more encouraging and supportive than I could have ever imagined. I'm just so proud to now be a Knox alum."

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Printed on Tuesday, December 6, 2022