Student Lives

Who: Courtney Graham, a 20-year old from Cooperstown, New York (Baseball Hall of Fame!)Class: Courtney, a junior, is a political science major and an anthropology minor. She hopes to one day get her Ph.D in international relations from St. Andrew’s University in Scotland. Courtney became interested in anthropology, international relations and public service after she returned from a trip to Brazil. “It was eye-opening,” she says. “While in Brazil, I saw this woman on the street with her baby. The only way she could survive was off of free hand-outs people gave her. I realized then that I wanted to help this woman and others like her.”When not in class: Courtney is a co-coordinator for Big Buddies, a mentoring program in which UVM students are paired up with underprivileged students from five different Burlington area schools. The kids are typically between the ages of 7 and 12 and Courtney says they are usually eager to have an older mentor. Courtney and the other UVM students commit 3 hours a week to their buddy as “positive cheerleaders and role models. We basically give these kids another perspective on what life is all about and what opportunities are out there.”Likes: Being an RA for the John Dewey Honors Program floor in Harris/Millis. “I love it. I’m not really an RA for the money, although that doesn’t hurt! I do it because I know the first-year experience is tough and I want new students to know that someone is there for them. That’s priceless.” Courtney says she also like just hanging out with friends and going out with them to eat, to restaurants such as India House. “I love the food there, but trust me, I only stick to the mild stuff.”Dislikes: “Hmm, I don’t think I have any. I could complain about work, I could complain about dorm food. But I feel like we’re all so fortunate to be here, in college, that stuff like that doesn’t even matter. It’s very petty.”