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More Than I Imagined Seniors reflect on accomplishments and look ahead

Lucas Simon

Graduation year: 2020

High school: Notre Dame College Prep High School

Hometown: Chicago

Majors: Accounting, business administration-management information systems

Activities: Varsity basketball, CORE career mentor, Filipino Student Organization, Illinois CPA Society student ambassador

Internship: Accounting/finance intern with Abbott Laboratories

Post-grad plans: Summer finance internship at Aon plc; upon completion, pursue a master's in accounting at the University of Illinois on a full-ride scholarship

Why Augustana?    

To me, Augustana offered me the best balance of athletics and academics. Being able to receive a great education and play basketball at a very high level was something that I valued a lot when looking at colleges, and this place definitely fit that criteria.

Are you where you thought you'd be when you first came to campus?    

Not even close. The only thing I really knew about college in general was through word of mouth from other people, which was not very much. So I definitely had a preconceived notion of how it should go, but it definitely didn't turn out that way—for both good and bad.

Who helped you get to where you are now?  

Everyone who is part of the Augustana family really has had a huge impact on my time here. Most importantly though, my family, friends, Dr. John Delaney, Professor Nadia Schwartz, and Coach G and the entire basketball staff have all supported and challenged me in ways I never thought possible to get me to where I am now.

Peak experience?    

Aside from playing in the D3 National Championship my freshman year, a peak experience was creating the Filipino Student Organization on campus with my good friends, Jude Salazar and Lyka Canto. Although it was just created this year, it was incredibly fulfilling knowing that I could have a strong impact on students' future experience by helping increase diversity on campus through this club.

What surprised you?    

What surprised me the most about Augie was the opportunities provided here. If you have a goal during your time on campus, whatever it may be, no one is stopping you because Augie will provide you with that opportunity.

How did you use your Augie Choice?    

I used my Augie Choice the summer going into senior year to travel with the basketball team for 10 days to see so many beautiful sites throughout Italy, France and Spain.

What will you miss the most?   

Definitely the lifelong relationships and connections with the people here at Augie. Those will last forever.

Advice for the Class of 2024?

Throughout college and most importantly, life, there will be so many ups and downs. In the face of adversity, just know you can do it. This will always be possible through self confidence in yourself and a tremendous support system.

"I can quote several local 6-year-olds to high schoolers who said, 'I wanna be like Lucas.' He is a very mature, always composed young professional on the basketball court, in the classroom, wherever. He is an accomplished student-athlete who stayed incredibly organized and motivated to be able to achieve a high GPA as well as perform well on his team. It was a great honor to have him in my classes for three years, and I look forward to reading his updates from the master's in accounting program at the University of Illinois."

– Nadia Schwartz, assistant professor, accounting