Featured International Freshman: Meropi Papastergiou ’15

1. What was surprising or unexpected about Vassar?

“I guess what I found most surprising about Vassar was the openness of the people. They are not afraid to be who they want to be and they have the courage to stand behind their opinions however controversial they might be. It was unexpected to see people be so accepting. Vassar is a place where difference is celebrated and you can truly be yourself without the fear of being judged.”

2. What are some of the highlights of your first year?

“Freshman orientation and especially ”Gays of our Lives” because I had never seen anything like it, serenading, my Drama 102 class and our final “Hamletmachine” projects, being in the “Vagina Monologues”, THE DEECE:(((, THE MUG!!!!, my first Women’s Studies class, “HETERONORMATIVITY”, my first all-nighters in the library, philosophy class in the quad, hanging with friends in the quad, midnight walks to sunset lake, snow at Halloween, the uproar at UpC when Meryl Streep won the Oscar!”

3. How has your student fellow and fellow group been a resource to you?

“They have been a great support group and someone to turn to whenever I needed help. I don’t think I could have had a better student fellow. She really made me feel at home from the moment I got to Vassar and I know that she will always be there for me even after this year. I think having a fellow group makes those first awkward days a lot easier and it really helps to not have to go to a Deece dinner alone. No matter who I hang out with now or who I’m going out with in the weekends it’s good to know that I can always go home to my fellow group and have a philosophical discussion about the meaning of self at 2 in the morning.”

4. What extra-curricular activities have you joined this year?

“I have been a part of the Vassar Haiti Project since the beginning of this year and I have been able to participate to most of their sales and events. I was also in Vassar’s production of the “Vagina Monologues” and a Merely Players production titled “Merely Bitches ?”

5. What are your first summer plans?

“My plans for the summer are not quite solidified yet. I am going back home to Greece and am hoping to get some sort of job or internship there. I have contacted the University in my hometown of Thessaloniki and it seems like I will be able to collaborate with them in some sort of project most likely related to comparative law and women’s rights. There is also a chance I might volunteer at a battered women’s shelter. I will also most likely work at my parent’s alternative tourism farm-guesthouse. Nothing is for certain yet but, in general, I hope to just get some rest, do some reading, enjoy the sun and sea of Greece and return to Vassar with my batteries fully charged and ready for another full and exciting year.”

6. What would you do differently in your second year?

“I would plan my schedule better and try to be a bit more organized. Hopefully I will stop being a master procrastinator and start doing things ahead of time for once. I want to exercise more, maybe go to the gym or join a fitness class (or then again maybe not)and I want to start eating healthier and avoiding the Deece as much as possible. I also want to try and take advantage of the opportunity to get off campus more often. I want to visit the City more next year, go to museums, catch shows etc. Overall this has been a very good year in my life and I am really enjoying my time at Vassar. Hopefully this will remain true for the years to come as well.”

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