Kathleen McQuiston

Attending college was not a given in my family. Although my parents recognized the value of a college education, they were not so sure of the value of spending money they did not have on sending daughters to college. We "were just going to get married anyway." Somehow my older sister convinced them to at least let her go to a state college. By the time it was my turn, I was able to convince them to let me go to a private institution. Interestingly, no one in the family batted an eye when after my college graduation I announced I was going to graduate school.

The college I attended was the opposite of Bucknell. Just about everyone was enrolled in a professional program. We were always grumbling about having to take a humanities or social science course. We didn't see the point.

When I arrived at college I was fortunate to have found a crowd of friends from diverse upbringings. Everyone's background seemed to be different from everybody else in some way or another - religious, ethnic, socioeconomic or even parental strictness. My high school and neighborhood was very homogenous so it was really my first exposure to be people who were really different than I was. I made my share of social blunders but somehow I survived them all. I just wish I had been able to take more humanities and social science classes.

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