Class of 2022

Hi all! I’m Madeline Arbutus (she/her) and I’m a senior Visual Art (Graphic Design) and Media and Communications double major with an Art History and Museum Studies Minor. The Humanities Scholar Program is the reason I chose to attend UMBC and I can’t believe it’s already my last year! My favorite hum experiences have to be first year seminars, living on the humanities scholars floor, and trips to Baltimore (especially when we saw the BSO’s Movie with Orchestra concert for The Nightmare Before Christmas!). Currently at UMBC, I’m the Curatorial Assistant at the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture, our fine art gallery at UMBC, and Research Assistant under Margaret Re for her exhibition, A Designed Life: Contemporary American Textiles, Wallpapers and Containers & Packaging, 1951-1954. I’m also Production Manager and Circulation Chief at The Retriever, UMBC’s student-led newspaper. My goal is to become an Art Director (I really enjoy book design and print publication design) or a design historian, specifically focusing on modern art. My favorite places to go have always been art museums and galleries and I love reading and playing bass guitar. I’m so grateful for the people I’ve met through the hum program and in the UMBC art community and I’m looking forward to a creative future after graduation.

Привіт! Hello! My name is Danylo Leshchyshyn. I am a History and Political Science dual major with a Certificate in Security Studies, and I am also in the Honors College. I am a Ukrainian-American fluent in Ukrainian, and I come to UMBC from Howard County, Maryland. My ethnic identity inspires much of my activities. I love studying history and I enjoy studying the political worlds of Ukraine, Europe, and the global international community. At UMBC, I have had the opportunity to present my independent research at URCAD, the Richard Macksey National Undergraduate Humanities Research Symposium, and the Pi Sigma Alpha Undergraduate Research Conference. I am President of the UMBC Chapter of the Delta Alpha Pi Disabilities Honor Society, Vice President of the Autism Spectrum Student Association, and Treasurer of the Political Science Council of Majors. I also participate in the History Student Council, Current Events Forum, and the UMBC chapters of the Phi Alpha Theta National History Honors Society and Pi Sigma Alpha National Political Science Honors Society.
Getting accepted into the Humanities Scholars Program and UMBC has proven to be one of the best things to have ever happened to me. Living and studying alongside fellow Humanities Scholars, I have grown in ways that I could never have imagined. Thanks to the love and patience from both faculty and students, I have learned to accept more of myself and be proud of who I am.
I originally planned to study abroad at NUI Galway during Fall 2020, due to their strong commitment to supporting neurodivergent and LGBTQ+ students. Galway is a very lovely town, and even if I never get to study there, I hope to visit it again during safer times.
I look forward to meeting the new cohort of Humanities Scholars once we all return to campus!

Hello all! My name is Nayimb Joyner and I am majoring in English on the Secondary Education Certificate Track. I am also studying to obtain a Certificate in Spanish Studies and a Certificate in Intercultural Communication. During the past few years, I’ve contemplated a myriad of majors and careers but the one path that has always been most appealing to me is that of being a teacher, and a teacher of English at that. English/Language Arts is deeply tied to the study of language within different forms of media, the study of communication and how we communicate across cultures, as well as how narratives impact society. In today’s world, it is more necessary than ever for people to be able to look beyond the surface and see the deeper meanings within literature and media. It is equally important that people utilize various forms of media to create their own narratives. As Dr. Mayra-Santos Febres remarked in her Fall 2019 Humanities Forum lecture “The Fractal Caribbean”: “If we change the narrative, we change the reality.” Through my coursework, I am glad to be developing some of the skills and obtaining some of the knowledge I will need to be an effective educator, as well as a citizen in this global society. I am proud to say that I am a member of the Class of ‘22 Humanities Scholars cohort. I actually applied to the Humanities Scholars Program at the last minute during my senior year- but I can say that it was one of the best decisions that I’ve ever made. Besides making college realistic and affordable, the opportunities and the people that I’ve been exposed to within these past two years have been absolutely amazing. I have been able to form incredible relationships that have changed my life and I am truly grateful for this program. Despite these uncertain and peculiar times we find ourselves in, I remain confident in the grit of the UMBC community to push forward and succeed. As I begin the final stage of my undergraduate career, I’m excited to be here at UMBC in the Humanities Scholars program.

Hello everyone! My name is Ethan Miletich and I am a History and Political Science double major entering my final year here at UMBC. Within my studies I focus on the Cold War and how its outcome has created the world we live in today. I also enjoy learning about the legal system of the United States and its origins. After I graduate, I intend on pursuing a Juris Doctorate and/or a Doctorate is History.
Currently I am involved in many organizations and activities on campus. I am a brother of Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity where I served on the Executive Committee this past semester. Volunteerism is incredibly important to me as I value being able to serve my community and Pi Kapp gave me the opportunity to volunteer at the Maiden Choice School, a local school that assists children with cognitive disabilities. I was also recently inducted into Phi Alpha Theta, the National History Honors Society, and Pi Sigma Alpha, the National Political Science Honors Society. I participate in the Environmental Task Force where I was nominated as the Vice President of the club for the Fall 2019-Spring 2020 semesters. I also am a member of our university’s Honors College and of course our Humanities Scholars Program!
It’s bittersweet to know that I am entering my final year at UMBC and within the Humanities Scholars Program as I have created great bonds and wonderful memories with the students and faculty. The Humanities Scholars allowed me to meet some of my best friends I have made at college. Although it has been rough this past year because of the global pandemic, I am excited to finally return to campus and reunite with those people as well as continue meeting and connecting with new people both within the Humanities Scholars and out. I look forward to finishing up my studies here at UMBC.

Hello all, my name is Olivia Smith! I am an MLLI/Linguistics major, double minoring in Creative Writing and Africana Studies. I am an avid writer, reader, and lover of music and film. Going into my fourth year as a Humanities Scholar, my main interest has always been how we as humans communicate with each other in any and every language, and the specific cultures which inform these languages. In my writing, I rely on the translation of emotion and empathy to illustrate what I feel or to tell a story in stanza form, and that is why I believe that linguistics with a cultural focus is so important. In my time at UMBC, I have grown to learn so much that has lead me that much closer to achieving the goals I have set for myself, namely: acquiring as many languages as I can, traveling to as many countries as I can, gaining experiences to employ in my writing, and possibly teaching to build bridges of cultural understanding between people of different perspectives and backgrounds. I have made amazing connections with professors and peers, all scholars alike in an array of fields of study, backgrounds, and perspectives of life. I have learned about researching, storytelling in various medias, and so many ways we communicate whether verbally or non-verbally, through images or song, and what it truly means to experience a diverse community both inside and outside of academia. I am deeply grateful for my time at UMBC and look forward to the future it has propelled me into!

Hey! My name is Angelica Mansfield. I’m currently double majoring in English Literature and Media and Communication Studies, although that’s always subject to change because I’ve tried three different minors during my time at UMBC and I still have two years left. However, I am hoping that my two majors will be able to prepare me for a career in working with nonprofit organizations all across the United States.
Right now, I’m currently part of multiple organizations on campus, even with the whole social distancing thing that forced everyone off campus and onto an online format. I am Assistant Arts and Culture Editor at The Retriever (our campus newspaper), I recently became Senior Managing Editor of Bartleby, the creative arts magazine, and I am Secretary of the Outdoor Recreation Club. I am also part of the Honors College and the Humanities Scholars Program and UMBC’s Wind Ensemble (I play the trumpet). It’s kind of the culture at UMBC to overload yourself with things to do, so just make sure you take mental health breaks when you can.
The Humanities Scholars Program is actually why I came to UMBC. Not only did it offer a scholarship, but I would also get to be part of this close-knit community that I wasn’t sure I could find anywhere else. I started at UMBC with my cohort and over the past two years, I have gotten to know them all so much better and, even if we don’t spend as much time together as we used to (since we don’t have the Humanities Seminar in sophomore year), every single one of them is always happy to see me and I am always happy to see them. In addition, all of us lived together for the past two years in the Humanities LLC (Living Learning Community). There’s something very comforting and familial about seeing the same people every morning, getting to spend time with them once classes have finished for the day, and then bidding each other goodnight.

Hello! My name is Garrett Posey. I am a double major in Political Science and History and a proud member of the class of 2022 Humanities Scholars cohort. Although I have tried out a variety of other majors, such as Global Studies, Mandarin, and Media and Communications, I solidified my passions and interests during my sophomore year. I am excited to take more courses focusing on policy analysis and American history. I am particularly interested in doing research on the reasons behind American opinion on legislation that is widely accepted in Europe and Canada, such as universal healthcare.
In the summer of 2019, I interned under Congressman Raskin in his Democracy Summer youth leadership program. After thorough research into menstrual equity legislation, we advocated on Capitol Hill multiple times to gain co-sponsorships for an important bill. I learned crucial lessons on political organization, and I am excited to apply these skills in future political science internships.
I am thrilled to be entering my third year as a Humanities Scholar. The program has introduced me to wonderful resources and some of the best friends I have ever had. I expect to continue this trend elsewhere at UMBC as I aim to form lasting relationships with the incredible people of this diverse campus. I am active in the school’s Environmental Task Force, once again becoming a regular member after being elected president for the last year. Joining a wide variety of campus communities is vital to getting the most out of my experience at UMBC, so I am grateful to be interacting with many different groups of people. Through these connections inside and outside my majors and the Humanities Program, I hope to make a difference in this world alongside my fellow scholars.

Hola! My name is Ashley Bonilla, I am an English Literature major with a minor in Cultural Anthropology (and hopefully in Spanish as well). I’m fluent in both English and Spanish, and I have always had a passion for studying these languages. I strongly believe that language and perspective shape the way we live and have always been fascinated by cultural studies. I graduated from James Hubert Blake high school in Silver Spring, Maryland. In high school, I was very involved in speech and debate as well as my advanced placement language courses. I was the president of my school’s Hispanic Leadership Club and an officer on the debate team, as well as an assistant for AP Spanish and Spanish II. I was strongly influenced by my caring teachers at Blake to pursue a career in education and cultural studies. The transition from high school to college frightened me at first because I am a first generation college student. However, shortly after arriving, I learned that college wasn’t as frightening or hard as I thought it would be.
Because of the welcoming environment in the Humanities LLC, I have made amazing friends and I really feel as though I fit in. The program has been super rewarding and the faculty has been amazing! (Shout out to Professor Phin!!) I am enjoying the first year Humanities seminar and I cannot wait to see what next semester has in store for me here at UMBC!

Bonjour! My name is Kristin Bechtel and I am a junior MLLI major on the French track with a minor in Korean. My love for languages started in the fifth grade when I began to study Latin, and while I have forgotten much of my Latin due to lack of use, my four years of Latin classes gave me a greater understanding and appreciation for the English language as well as a head start when I began studying French in earnest in high school. Because of my love for French, I took the steps to graduate high school a year early and I spent the equivalent of a gap year in the French-speaking part of Switzerland where I was able to greatly improve my language skills as well as get to know people from all over the world. While my year in Switzerland helped convince me that I wanted to continue with my French studies, I also wanted to pursue my interest in the Korean language and Korean culture. UMBC and the Humanities Scholars Program really encouraged me to believe that I could do both, and from day one I have felt supported in my goal to study abroad in both France and South Korea before I graduate. In addition to the financial and study abroad support, I am delighted to be a Humanities Scholar because of the positive experience I had participating in the first-year seminars, which were a great introduction to college life because I got to learn from some of my favorite professors, and I got to know the other scholars in my cohort better. I was especially excited that my first seminar directly related to my academic interests because part of Korean history was a major component of the course. Beyond freshman year, my favorite part of being a Humanities Scholar is the off-campus excursions to see plays and musicals, which have given me a greater appreciation for what the city of Baltimore has to offer. Ultimately, I would like to use my language skills to work as a translator and become an advocate for voices that are blocked by language barriers. On campus, I am involved in the Asian Studies Council of Majors as well as the K-pop Dance Club, and I hope to start working as a French tutor this semester.