Rollins College names Jessica Kaufman ’15 the 2015 Outstanding Graduating Senior from the Hamilton Holt School.
(Photo by Laura J. Cole)
Jessica Kaufman ’15 is this year’s recipient of the Outstanding Graduating Senior Award from the Hamilton Holt School. The award is the evening degree program’s equivalent to being named a valedictorian. She will deliver the official outstanding senior address at the Hamilton Holt School's commencement ceremony on May 9.
Campus organizations: Secretary for the executive board of Sigma Tau Delta
Post-graduation plans: I’m heading to the Treasure Valley in Idaho for a two-year commitment with Teach for America to teach English in secondary schools.
Most proud of: My education. I never thought I’d graduate from college—let alone that I’d receive awards or be asked to speak at my graduation. For me, my degree represents years of sacrifice, hard work, and little sleep. It’s allowed me to show my daughter what it means to really work hard and the rewards that come from focus, determination, and strong work ethic.
Favorite memory at Rollins: I was taking Language Studies and I think it’s the hardest English course ever. Three of us holed up in a study room in Olin Library, ordered pizza, and commiserated over these insanely difficult papers we had to write. Even though we were stressed and we hadn’t slept, we were in it together.
Advice for fellow graduating seniors: I would say there is no substitute for tenacity. Many people will tell you that the dreams you have are impossible or to think practically, but there is no limit on what you can accomplish or who you can be if you are determined and you work hard. Secondly, when times get tough, give back—do something kind, give of yourself, support someone else. These are what will fill you up when you’re running on empty.