A Tribute to HC UFL’s Seniors of 2018

The end of the semester may have you thinking about finals, but at HC UFL we’re thinking of the 10 wonderful collegiettes who are graduating. To celebrate their contributions and honor their legacies at UF, we’d like to introduce you to some of the strongest and most inspirational women we know: our seniors. Thank you for making HC UFL an amazing chapter. We wish you nothing but success, happiness and tons of #HCXO!

• Celine Besman

Degree: Public Relations

Position in HC UFL: Co-Campus Correspondent

Favorite HC UFL Memory: My first HC Tour

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? I was able to work with amazing women that showed me what it meant to be hard-working, passionate and creative.

Favorite UF Memory: Being social media manager for frank gathering.

What will you miss most about UF? Being able to spend a Sunday morning drinking coffee with my best friends

Plans after graduation: I’m still searching for my next step, but until then, I am lucky enough to spend a little time at home with family and friends and maybe do a little traveling before making my next big move.

Advice for younger Gators: There’s literally a club for anything on campus. Find what you enjoy, and join them! They don’t have to be top mainstream organizations. With such a large community, you have to find ways to make it a little smaller.

 

• Anna Burbano

Degree: English (Minor: Classical Studies)

Position in HC UFL: Senior Editor (previously editor and campus style writer!)

Favorite HC UFL Memory: Participating in every Her Campus tour as a brand ambassador!

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? It gave me the chance to grow into my editing and writing skills. As a current blogger and freelance journalist, I greatly appreciated having HC UFL as the first of my many bylines!

Favorite UF Memory: Playing Hero in Shakespeare in the Park’s “Much Ado About Nothing” last week. I was perfectly cast!

What will you miss most about UF? Everything! From serving as the English Society’s president this year to finding my home with HC UFL and Catholic Gators, I have so many lovely memories to sustain me after I graduate this May.

Plans after graduation: Immediate: Get my driver’s license this summer (I KNOW). Later: Move to a major city, and work as a fashion journalist!

Advice for younger Gators: The world is your oyster! Don’t wait around for an opportunity, or you’ll miss it. And my all-time favorite: “Have courage, and be kind.”

 

• Ellen Bazley

Degree: Public Relations

Position in HC UFL: Head Videographer

Favorite HC UFL Memory: Without a doubt, the best memories are from the HC Tour.

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? I feel that HC UFL taught me the value of being creative and thinking outside the box. Also, I gained so many writing skills, and writing skills are valuable in any profession.

Favorite UF Memory: Going to football games; specifically, watching UF upset No. 3 Ole Miss in 2015.

What will you miss most about UF? I'm not leaving UF just yet, so thank goodness for that!

Plans after graduation: I am actually staying at UF one more year for my master's degree!

Advice for younger Gators: Get involved. Even if you are a little unsure of yourself and you don't think you are ready for a specific position or a specific club, go for it anyway. You never know what will happen. When I first participated in WUFT anchor auditions my sophomore year, I thought there was no way I would get picked. But I actually did, and I appeared as an anchor on the Sports in 60 segments for several semesters.

 

• Antonella Amoruso

Degree: Public Relations

Position in HC UFL: PR/Events Team Member

Favorite HC UFL Memory: My favorite memory would have to be the 2016 HC Tour. It was my first year with HC UFL, and it was so much fun hosting the event and giving away so much cool stuff all day in Plaza of the Americas. There were so many people helping out and lining up for the event. It was a great time!

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? HC UFL has been an amazing part of my college experience, and I think it has definitely prepared me for post-grad life. As a PR major, I got to learn about managing HC UFL as a brand through social media and sponsored events, and I learned the importance of community and teamwork by working with such a motivated group of girls. I’m so thankful for my experience with HC UFL!

Favorite UF Memory: It’s so hard to pick just one! I guess I’d have to say there’s nothing like game days in the Swamp. Looking around the stadium at thousands of people cheering on the Gators as they run onto the field is something I’ll never forget.

What will you miss most about UF? I’ll miss being able to just get together with friends and do random things whenever we want! Living in Gainesville has been fun, and I’ll miss it.

Plans after graduation: After graduation, I’m super excited to be moving to Washington, D.C. to work for Burson-Marsteller in their Public Affairs and Crisis practice!

Advice for younger Gators: Don’t stress about silly things! Freshman year, every decision you make might seem life-changing, but it isn’t! Your major does not define your future, your GPA does not define you, and joining one organization over another will not make that big of a difference. Do what you want, relax, and enjoy your time at UF because it really goes by faster than you think.

 

• Maxine Grossman

Degree: Public Relations (Minor: Innovation)

Position in HC UFL: Features Writer

Favorite HC UFL Memory: The first time my article was shared on the national page; such a proud and exciting moment!

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? It allowed me to find my voice and obviously helped me become a better writer, too, and learn about deadlines. But the biggest skill it gave me that I can use anywhere is having a voice/personal brand.

Favorite UF Memory: The FSU vs. UF football game this year. Both of my parents graduated from UF, and I’m also graduating from UF. My brother just started his freshmen year this year at FSU though, so it was a tough pill to swallow, but it was awesome coming together for the game and getting to cheer, no matter who won or lost. It was like our family was out on the field.

What will you miss most about UF? I don't know if I'm going to miss the weird city of Gainesville or just college life in general more. I loved having the luxury of my schedule solely depending on what I wanted. Basically, after now, you're told most of the time what your schedule is: You have work Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and you have these things you have to go to, but in college, it's just all about you and what you want, and class can be at 3 p.m., and you don't have to wake up until 2. And, Gainesville is such an interesting place that I don't think is like anywhere else. It's very small-town yet so progressive and has some of the most educated people. You can drive an hour and be at natural springs or drive two hours and be at amusement parks and great shopping. I mean, it's just such an interesting dynamic.

Plans after graduation: Start work!! Woo!! (I actually am super excited— follow your dreams kids!)

Advice for younger Gators: Listen to what everyone says/advises, but do what feels right to you.

 

• Brianna Duncan

Degree: Journalism and Women’s Studies

Position in HC UFL: Features Writer

Favorite HC UFL Memory: Having my “Journalism Majors as told by Rom-Coms” article reposted by nationals

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? I was forced to make deadlines, communicate with editors and make meaningful pitches, which are all essential for people in the journalism industry.

Favorite UF Memory: Summer nights downtown with friends

What will you miss most about UF? I’ll honestly miss Weimer Hall. I spent 98 percent of my time there, and it’s where I crafted some of my favorite stories.

Plans after graduation: I’ll be traveling the country and freelancing!

Advice for younger Gators: Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to do it all. Don’t compare yourself to others!

 

• Isa Perez

Degree: Journalism

Position in HC UFL: Facebook Manager

Favorite HC UFL Memory: I think everyone can agree that their favorite HC UFL memory is every time the Her Campus tour comes around. It's always a great opportunity to spend the day with the team outside of a classroom and into the UF community to spread awareness about Her Campus and what we do! I always invite my friends to the event, so it's always a good time when my two worlds collide! I also got to attend the College Fashion Week while I was in NYC over the fall, which was so cool because I got to meet ladies from all the chapters across the nation!

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? I can definitely say that my positions within HC UFL in the past two years have granted me the opportunity to mature as a writer and truly write about things that other women in college can relate to. It's given me a platform to share my experiences and be able to connect with the women in our chapter and chapters around the country. HC UFL is, for sure, a part of the reason why I've been granted opportunities in internships and jobs alike!

Favorite UF Memory: This is so hard to answer because four years of memories ­– AH! Every year has lots of memories attached to it, but I would say living in a dorm for the first time was quite the experience. I lived two feet away from a complete stranger and 10 feet from two other strangers, which ended up becoming my friends. Like everyone, I feel a connection to the Swamp as well. Whether I'm going on a run or attending a game, that stadium makes me feel like it’s home.

What will you miss most about UF? I will miss being able to interact with the same people I've surrounded myself with throughout the last four years. The memories attached to each friend, faculty member, building (and even bar) are some that I will never forget! I'm very into the little things.

Plans after graduation: I am currently in the process to be on the West Coast as an NBC Page. After interning at 30 Rock during the past fall semester, I fell in love with everything the company is about and wanted to continue to be a part of it. Whether I'm an anchor, producer or even content creator, I hope to end up in the entertainment industry someday!

Advice for younger Gators: I live by the quote, "Do what you love, love what you do." It's on my wall and graduation cap, too. If you are aware of what makes you happy, even if it's risky, go for it! You never want to go throughout life thinking of the "what ifs," so take every opportunity and run.

 

• Kayla Ziadie

Degree: Journalism 

Position in HC UFL: Senior Editor

Favorite HC UFL Memory: The panic surrounding the infamous broken coupon vending machine at the 2018 Her Campus tour is something I will always find funny. It wasn't funny at the time, but now it definitely is.

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? With HC UFL, there's always something new – you never stay stagnant. Life is always changing, and you have to adapt to any given situation you may find yourself in. HC UFL has taught me that, while not everything will always pan out how you would like to, it all works out in the long run.

Favorite UF Memory: I have too many to pinpoint a specific one, so I'm just going to be vague and say my favorite UF memories are all the adventures I've gone on with the close friends I've made here. I have some truly incredible people in my life who I already miss terribly, even though I currently see them almost every day. From all-nighters, road trips, late night shenanigans, brunch dates, sporadic adventures, etc., my UF experience would not have been the same without these people in my life. I'm forever blessed to be unconditionally loved by them.

What will you miss most about UF? I will 100 percent miss Weimer Hall the most. I don't know what I would be doing if I wasn't a journalist, especially since I had my sights set on the J-School for years. It has been my safe haven for the past four years, and I have grown so much as both a woman and journalist in that building.  I'm certain I spent 90 percent of my time in Weimer, so I'm genuinely surprised (and blessed) I was never charged rent. I wouldn't trade all the late nights and irreplaceable memories I made there for the world.

Plans after graduation: Write, travel, work, grow.

Advice for younger Gators: Your time here will absolutely, without a shadow of a doubt, flash before your eyes. Make the most of every second, and remember: All progress is progress. Even if you feel you haven't found your niche here yet, I promise you will soon. The path to success is never linear. Cheer on the Gators at football games (and other sporting events) until you lose your voice. Pick a favorite library, and be stubborn about it. (Marston is mine, but third floor Weimer is my favorite study spot.) Go to as many on-campus and local events as you can. If you ever feel lost or forget why you're here, sit at the top of Ben Hill Griffin during sunset. I can promise you that you'll be reminded that you are exactly where you need to be.

 

• Cindy Ku

Degree: Biology

Position in HC UFL: Features Writer, PR/Events

Favorite HC UFL Memory: My first Her Campus tour. I felt like a part of a team for the first time ever, and it was when I really fell in love with Her Campus.

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? It changed my perspective on what I was capable of. I learned that my love for writing didn't just have to be a hobby I kept to myself.

Favorite UF Memory: My entire freshman year was my first stab at independence, and I spent that year giving it my best shot.

What will you miss most about UF? Decking out in orange and blue every weekend during football season, hearing “Be My Girl” at each game and being able to tell someone that I'll meet them "at the potato"

Plans after graduation: Anything and everything.

Advice for younger Gators: You've got this. Really.

 

• Christy Piña

Degree: Journalism

Position in HC UFL: Features Writer

Favorite HC UFL Memory: I had been trying to write for Her Campus for a couple years and always missed the application deadline. Then, when I finally applied and heard back in just a couple of days, it was such an amazing feeling. Also, when my UF Bucket List article made it to the Her Campus main page, that was really awesome, too.

How did HC UFL prepare you for life beyond college? HC UFL prepared me for life after college with weekly deadlines for pitches and articles.

Favorite UF Memory: Football/tailgate season

What will you miss most about UF? I’ll miss tailgate season and life as a student as opposed to an “adult.” I’ll miss Gainesville itself, along with the people here.

Plans after graduation: I’m still working on my specific plans for this summer, but eventually, I will move up to New York City because that’s where my dream industry is located.

Advice for younger Gators: Go to everything. Make the most out of every event that happens in Gainesville and UF that you may have the slightest interest in. Take advantage. You only have four years, technically. Don’t waste them.

 

To our lovely senior collegiettes of 2018, we’ll miss you dearly, and we wish you the best of luck for the future. As always, #HCXO!