Student Story

Alternative Spring Break Takes Kat Reidl '20 to Texas

Tell us why you decided to pursue your major.

I took a financial accounting class during my first year and really enjoyed it. I realized I could apply accounting to any industry. I’m very interested in accounting for the music industry — especially tax accounting for the entertainment industry, so I minored in arts administration.

I’ve already had a tax internship for two tax seasons and will be going into tax upon graduation.

Why did you choose to attend Simmons?

My grandmother graduated from Simmons in 1939. I toured as a prospective student and fell in love with the campus. I went to a very small high school and I knew that I learn better in smaller classroom environments. I also understood the importance and value of a women’s centered education. After I was accepted — it was an easy choice.

What is Alternative Spring Break (ASB)?

Kat Reidl ’20 & Molly Blackwell ’20
Kat Reidl '20 & Molly Blackwell ’20

It’s a student-led volunteer program over spring break. ASB is a great opportunity for Simmons students to get out of their comfort zones and learn about other communities through service work.

I became involved with ASB in my junior year and we traveled to Denver to build with Habitat for Humanity of Metro Denver. I was really looking to get involved in a service/volunteer opportunity through Simmons and I couldn’t think of a better way to spend my March break. After enjoying my time on last year's trip, I was an ASB Leader along with Molly Blackwell and Sabrina Khalif.

What did you do for ASB this year?

We traveled to Beaumont, Texas in southeast Texas. This is a part of the United States that has been severely impacted by major disasters including Hurricane Katrina and Harvey. On the worksite, we did everything from getting the yard/green space ready for a home to putting in flooring and floorboards in another home.

What did you learn from this experience?

A lot of the ASB experience involves being flexible and adapting a go with the flow mindset. We usually don’t know what work the Habitat Affiliate has for our group. I’ve learned that it’s okay to not plan every minute of every day. There are things that can’t be planned for and that’s why it’s important to surround yourself with people you trust.

What continues to surprise me is how close our team gets throughout the week. The ASB team is made up of people from all different majors and classes and everyone brings in different experiences — that’s what makes it so great.

What's your favorite memory from ASB?

2020 Alternative Spring Break group
2020 ASB Group

My favorite memory from ASB is when we were in Denver. As a group, we traveled in two vans that were driven by Simmons staff members. When we traveled around there was usually someone who would play music. I always liked the sing-alongs and the car concerts — especially when we had to get to the worksite early. It was great to have some pump-up jams! Last year and this year I made an ASB playlist and had everyone add some of their favorite songs to it :)

Do you have a favorite Simmons memory?

I think my favorite memory is going to the Boston Music Awards at the House of Blues as press for Simmons Radio. I was in a radio operations class at the time and we were able to get press passes because we were doing a special for the radio. It was a great night! I don’t think I would have had that opportunity if I wasn’t at Simmons.

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