16 July 2021 • Arts Ready to Change the World, Brown '24 Reflects on First Year at HWS

Rising sophomore Samari Brown ’24 looks back at her first year at the Colleges, including how she found her passion for theatre. Brown wrote for and performed in the fall production “Supernatural Saunter.” This summer, as a research assistant in the Theatre Department, she is studying famous BIPOC members of the Geneva community and writing a play based on their work.

What’s the biggest difference between being a high school student and a college student?

The biggest difference about college is the schedule. In high school, you’re given a set number of hours that you’re in classes for five days a week. For the most part, in college, you have the freedom to plan your schedule according to whatever works best for you and I appreciate that.

Best part about residence hall life?

The friendships and connections. Since you’re seeing the people on your floor in the morning, throughout the day, and at night, you’re always seeing friendly faces and getting to know new people! Some of the best friendships I’ve made this year are with the people who lived on my floor.

Favorite course?

During the spring semester, the Fisher Center for the Study of Gender and Justice offered the course, “Words Matter: Justice Through Historical Representation” which encouraged us to challenge conventional narratives in history. Not only did this course leave me with a mission of rewriting (righting) history, but also it left me with the lingering question, “What is it that I can do to play a role in the telling of a more accurate history?”

A faculty/ staff member you’ve connected with?

Before coming to HWS, I had little to no experience in theatre. Being placed in “Acting I” allowed me to step outside of my comfort zone. It wasn’t easy, but Associate Professor of Theatre Chris Woodworth guided me through what theatre can mean and be in my life. If I ever have any questions about life, academics, or anything else, Professor Woodworth is always there to help. I’m planning to major in Theatre and I value the connection that I’ve been fortunate enough to make with her.

Favorite spot on campus?

The HWS Library. The quiet study room on the second floor, the Au Bon Pain lemonade, and the great view looking over the rest of campus is the perfect equation for a well-written assignment! Plus, I always look forward to speaking with the friendly librarians!

Where have you found community on campus?

I’ve found community on campus through HWS Theatre. From the moment that I participated in my first production at HWS, I met many different theatre students and interacted with the faculty in the department, I knew that I had found my place on campus. The department has opened many doors for me and I’m excited to see where it leads me.

What’s something you’re proud of yourself for accomplishing?

I’m proud of myself for handling the stress of a pandemic while entering my first year at HWS. Some days were hard but the activities on campus, my professors trying their best to make online classes engaging, and the friends I’ve made so far created memories that I didn’t think I could have.

What have you learned about yourself this year?

I’ve had a lot of time to reflect on what I’m passionate about and the things that I’m ready to do. I may not be sure where I’ll be 5 or 10 years from now but as of right now… I’m ready to change the world.