Activities at Stonehill
Students for Environmental Action, Mindful Living Community, Honors Program
Environmental Development Associate, BrightFarms, New York, NY
Franklin Square, NY
Advice for incoming Stonehill students
Have a plan, but be flexible and open to unexpected opportunities (where’s the excitement in having it all figured out anyway?).
For Nicole Crescimanno, ’10, an interest in the environment was a seed planted during her childhood in Long Island. But until she arrived at Stonehill, she wasn’t sure how to translate her passion for environmental issues into a long-term career path. When it came time to select a Learning Community (LC) – classes taken by Stonehill sophomores, arranged around a common theme – Nicole’s interest was piqued by the environmental ethics LC that took place in the Everglades.
“When I saw how that LC combined science and the humanities in the study of the environment, it was like a culmination of my own thoughts,” says Nicole. “I realized pursuing Environmental Studies didn’t have to mean exclusively hard-core science.”
After setting her sights on the Everglades LC, Nicole still needed to place into the program. She convinced Professor Susan Mooney, director of Stonehill’s Environmental Studies Program, of her interest in adopting Environmental Studies as her major and her enthusiasm for the Everglades program.
“It all clicked for me,” says Nicole. “Professor Mooney could see it was my passion, and she supported me.”
Nicole’s interest in the intersection between climate change and culture was solidified through the LC experience and through her participation in Stonehill’s Mindful Living Community and Students for Environmental Action. She says the genesis of the Mindful Living Community – where students live together in a community focused on eco-friendly initiatives such as organic gardening and composting – perfectly illustrates how every student can find a niche at Stonehill.
“My friends came up with the idea to have a community focused on shared causes, and it was great for us to create that space,” she says. “That’s the best part of Stonehill: If you have a good idea, it won’t be handed to you but there will be someone who will support you and help you make it happen.”
Nicole says that ability to take initiative has proven valuable to life after college, both in her graduate studies – she pursued a Master’s in Climate and Society at Columbia University – and in her current work for an eco-focused start-up.
“I’ve learned how to be independent,” she says.