Finding Their Way
June 07, 2011
As a first-year student, she did not like Stonehill. She felt alone, out of place and isolated. As a transfer student, he found the adjustment difficult even as he engaged in campus life.
Yet now, Michelle Tineo '12 and Mark White '11 both hail their education at Stonehill as they recently told 700 guests of the College at the President's Dinner in the Sports Complex.
Becoming A Leader
A first generation college student whose family comes from the Dominican Republic, Tineo says that Stonehill's support system ensured she did not "get lost in translation" or fall through the cracks during her freshman year.
And, the International Business major from Boston emphasizes that mentorship really helped her get involved with leadership opportunities at the College.
"Being a leader at Stonehill means that I choose to create a better place for all students, particularly students who have felt alone, discouraged, or isolated. I make a choice to be a leader in this community - in our Stonehill community - because I believe in what we can do together," explained Tineo who subsequently had the confidence to study in Italy for a semester.
Tineo now says that staying at Stonehill is one of the best decisions she has made in life.
"Staying here, taking full advantage of all that Stonehill has to offer, and transforming from an unsure first generation college student to an empowered, self-confident, mature, educated Latina woman, I realize that staying at Stonehill was one of the best decisions I have made in my life. It certainly was frustrating and challenging at times, but in just 10 months, I will graduate from Stonehill College, she said.
To read Tineo's full remarks, visit here.
Transformation Through Service
White transferred to Stonehill for his sophomore year but it took him time to adjust to new classes and surroundings. Even after joining the track and field team, he did not feel that he had settled into Stonehill life.
It wasn't until he went to New Orleans as a part of the H.O.P.E. Alternative Spring Break program that Stonehill began to click with him. Upon returning to the College, he got more involved in the Student Government Association and Campus Ministry.
Eventually, he became a H.O.P.E. student leader, spending spring break of his junior year helping a Florida community rebuild after a devastating hurricane. There he learned about resilience in the face of adversity, which whetted his appetite for more service opportunities.
In March this year, White headed to Nicaragua for his last H.O.P.E. trip and his first experience beyond the United States. And, what he encountered in that Central American country shattered his perspective on the world.
"I was a witness to the worst material poverty a human can endure, yet the greatest amount of faith and love a human can hold. I even had the pleasure of digging a latrine with Provost Katie Conboy (pictured left), whose presence as a staff leader served as yet another example of the commitment Stonehill has to its students, even at the highest levels," he recalled.
An accounting major, White has grown in confidence thanks to his service opportunities with the H.O.P.E. program. He knows more clearly how he wants to live his life and, going forward, service to others will be part of his everyday life.
White is pursuing graduate studies in accounting at Northeastern University and will start his career in public accounting at PricewaterhouseCoopers in January.
To read White's remarks, visit here.
For more information, contact Communications and Media Relations at 508-565-1321.