Nora Mishanec

Nora Mishanec
Major: Psychology
Hometown: Schenectady, New York

Nora Mishanec '14

Why did you choose Wellesley?  

I babysat the son of an alumna for many years.  After putting him to bed, I would always pick up her copy of the College's alumnae magazine. I loved reading it and would often taken it home with me at the end of the night. When I told her that I was thinking about a liberal arts school, she convinced me to apply and helped me through the process.  Her love for Wellesley came through loud and clear, and that's how I wanted to feel about my school.   

Describe your most memorable course.

I would say I have four memorable courses because that's how many I have taken with my mentor, Professor Greer of the History department.  I first took Modern Black Freedom Struggle with her, which made me realize that everything I'd previously learned about the Civil Rights movement was wrong.  I then did two independent studies under her guidance, during which I researched students of color at Wellesley in the 1950s.  This past spring I took another course with her, called African Americans and US Visual Culture. Needless to say, I highly recommend Professor Greer.  She's been the single most influential person in my time here. 

What is a fun campus event you have attended?

I have a lot of friends who are involved in dance groups, so I'm always attending their shows. There are so many different kinds of dance at Wellesley -- modern, bellydancing, hip-hop, Latin, ballroom -- and they all have separate performances.  I thought it would be neat to organize a festival to show off the fantastic dance that this campus has to offer.  My friends and I ended up putting together the first Wellesley College Festival of Dance in February 2013.  We invited the college community to attend workshops on three types of dance: Irish step, Afro-Jazz, and salsa.  Later that day, we had a collaborative performance by ten different dance groups.  It was so much fun to organize and attend, and I hope it happens again in 2014. 

What is your favorite spot on campus?

It's got to be the top floor of the Davis Museum.  The art on display changes frequently, so I usually see something different each time I go.  I like going in the late afternoon, when the sun comes in through the huge skylights.  It's so serene that it makes me forget about everything and just relax.    

What is your favorite Wellesley memory?

One night my friend Ellen and I stayed up really late trying to force ourselves to write papers.  We kept procrastinating by fantasizing about all the places we could travel for spring break.  Ellen, a geoscience fanatic, suggested Iceland.  We were so deliriously tired that we nearly bought our tickets right then and there.  A few days later, we were talking to two of our other friends -- it turns out they were already planning a spring break trip to Iceland.  The four of us ended up going together and had a fantastic time.  My mom jokes that only Wellesley students forgo the Caribbean in favor of Iceland for spring break.  

What advice would you give a prospective student?

I would definitely tell prospective students to forget about the all-women's factor.  There are so many things to love about Wellesley; I think the fact that it's not coed becomes less and less important the more time you spend here. It might seem strange for the first few weeks, but after that, it becomes very comfortable and wonderful.