Student Story

Lola Getz '21 Seeks to Carry on Gwen Ifill's Legacy

Why did you choose to attend Simmons?

I transferred to Simmons in spring 2018 after attending a much larger state school. I chose Simmons because I felt that a smaller academic setting was better suited to me. I liked the idea of a women-centered community where my voice could be heard. Simmons had always been my first choice and I was glad for the opportunity to finally attend.

What professors have helped you pursue your goals?

During my sophomore year, I took a class called "Women in Literature" with Professor Suzanne Leonard. It was a small, close-knit class and Professor Leonard ended up becoming my advisor for my English major. As my advisor, Professor Leonard has helped me in so many ways, from picking classes to writing recommendation letters to brainstorming career paths.

When I showed an interest in women's and gender studies as a second major, she paired me with Professor Kelly Hager as my second advisor. I had taken one of my first and favorite classes at Simmons with Professor Hager, so I was excited to work with her again. She has also been incredibly supportive and encouraging of my academic career at Simmons, and helped me get my first internship at DeGruyter, an academic publishing house. I am so grateful to be able to work with such encouraging and helpful professors.

What does the Ifill Scholarship mean to you?

I am so grateful to be a recipient of the Ifill Scholarship. Not only do I feel recognized for my hard work over the past three years, but I am also honored to carry on Gwen Ifill’s legacy as I move forward to my final year at Simmons. As a women's and gender studies major and a Simmons student, I really appreciate the groundbreaking work that Gwen Ifill was able to accomplish as a journalist. I think that Gwen Ifill presents an incredible role model for the students of this women’s-centered institution and we are so proud to follow in her footsteps.

How do you think students in the Ifill College will carry on Gwen Ifill’s legacy and impact the world?

We carry on her legacy every day with the passion we show for our academic pursuits. The Ifill College contains a group of such driven, dedicated, and creative students who work extremely hard to achieve the standard set by Gwen Ifill.

As you look to the future, how do you hope to connect your passion to a lifelong purpose? 

There are so many doors that have been opened for me since I chose to major in the Ifill College. As I look to the future, I hope to combine my love of literature and writing with the passion that I feel for gender equality and everything I have learned in my women's and gender studies classes. While I do not know exactly what the future holds for me, I do know that I will pursue my goals with the same energy and dedication that have gotten me to where I am today.

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