With graduation approaching quickly, Hamline seniors get ready to enter their careers with their education and plenty of passion under their belts.
Environmental studies major and Co-founder of the Feed Your Brain campaign Emma Kiley has big plans for her future, fueled by her passion for food access and food justice. First, though, she wants to take a chance to breathe after graduation.
“I have some books that I want to read,” Kiley said. “I have [also] been applying for a couple of different things. I do not have anything set in stone, which is kind of stressful but also exciting.”
Kiley has had two internships since being in college, one abroad in New Zealand at an environmental education nonprofit and another locally at the Hamline gardens.
The conversations surrounding food insecurity on Hamline’s campus that eventually led to the birth of the Feed Your Brain Campaign, and partaking in these internships have all helped shape her passions.
Kiley’s end goal stems far and wide with a focus on making change for those who need it most.
“I am really intrigued by the idea of staying in one community for a long time and really working on social justice, especially food justice issues in that community, and for me right now, I do not know what that will look like,” she said. “You just have to figure out what a community needs.”
Kiley is unsure if graduate school will follow in the future, her first steps are to really dive into a single community and recognize what their issues and needs are. Then she will look into if furthering her education and learning new skills is what the community needs the most.
“I am excited to start working in [a] community and on those issues, and then after maybe a year… really figure out what is needed in that space,” she said.
TJ Littlefield’s biggest dream consists of living with her partner in a house in the woods, with a sculpture park free for the public to visit and topped off with a little bridge over a river.
With a major in studio art and a concentration in sculpture and printmaking, this goal is backed by her studies. For now, Littlefield is training to work part-time at KCI Conservation Firm in Minneapolis.
“I will be doing public sculpture conservation, so outdoors mainly working with bronze… contemporary sculpture, whether it be metal or other materials, painted materials,” she said.
Along with this, Littlefield has been applying and looking at various places with varying positions. Things like being an artist’s apprentice, an art building office worker, a collection technician or a gallery retailer in a museum setting all interest her.
“I love how galleries are run. That is why I have been doing the St. Paul Art Crawl, the Sculpture Guilds and… changing the studios into open gallery spaces, stuff like that,” she said.
Communications through media major Patrick Ramirez is already making moves toward his career. Working at Sports Engine in their Track Wrestling Department, he sets up software for live streaming across the country, posts videos and frequently updates their website.
“I am just going to stick with that gig for a while,” Ramirez said. “Just to get some experience and get some stuff on my resume.”
Though he is a lover of the Twin Cities and intends to stick around for a bit, he is open to the idea of moving elsewhere.
“Maybe Pacific Northwest, Portland would be cool. Seattle, even Las Vegas,” he said. “It would be perfect to just do it… after school… experience something new, and then come back.”
Inspired by his parents who are from Guatemala, Ramirez is looking to apply his education to help people in countries similar to where his parents came from.
“Something that I have always wanted to do, ever since I was a little kid, is just [to help] people,” he said. “It is not just like… becoming rich and famous, and then donating money, but actually doing something to impact people’s lives.”
Though he is unsure of exactly what that looks like, he hopes to help people escape their oppressive militarized governments, work towards being eco-friendly and allow others to realize and reach their full potentials.