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Patricia Grod
More Than I Imagined Seniors reflect on accomplishments and look ahead

 Patricia Grod

Graduation year: 2020

High school: Glenbrook North High School

Hometown: Northbrook, Ill.

Majors: Communication studies, French

Minor: Entertainment and media

Activities: Varsity swimming, Delta Chi Theta sorority, Her Campus

Internship: Denver Center for the Performing Arts

Post-grad plans: I am applying for jobs all over the country in the public relations and marketing industries. I am really excited to see what my future holds!

Why Augustana?

I chose Augustana because it was a reasonable distance from my home at the time, and I knew I wanted to go to a smaller school for the class sizes and close-knit community. Augustana also provided me with the opportunity to continue my athletic career. I knew that I was going to be able to become a well-rounded student, athlete and person from all of the opportunities and experiences Augustana would offer me.

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

I am definitely not at all where I thought I would be. As a first-year student, I was very undecided with my majors and potential career paths. Augustana enabled me to explore courses in different subjects, which led me to communication studies and entertainment and media. I never expected to be a French major, but the department was so encouraging and flexible and helped me continue my passion for the language in higher education.

Who helped you get to where you are now?

First and foremost, my family. They have always been my #1 fans and biggest supporters of my academic and athletic careers. I will never be able to thank them enough for everything they have done for me.

My friends have made Augustana feel like home. I am thankful for the countless memories we have made and for always encouraging me to pursue my dreams. My college experience would not have been the same without you, and I am so grateful Augustana brought me to you.

To my coach and teammates, thank you for pushing me to be a better athlete, teammate and student. I learned so much about the sport from you and am so thankful I got to be a part of such an amazing team.

Thank you to all of the professors who have supported and guided me. I have had amazing academic advisors: Dr. Meg Kunde, Professor Gillian Lederman and Kelli Feigley. They always encouraged me to grow academically and as an individual, and prepared me well for future career opportunities. I also want to thank Dr. Emily Cranford for being one of the most caring, supportive and fun professors. She never doubted my abilities and made me appreciate French even more. She enabled me to be creative and have more confidence in my capabilities.

Peak experience?    

Interning at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. I was able to put my skills and knowledge to the test, as well as learn something new every day. My internship allowed me to discover more about myself and my abilities. I took on challenging projects I would have never imagined myself completing prior to my internship. I gained valuable skills and information and got to explore a new city, as well as make memories that will last a lifetime.

What surprised you?  

I am surprised by how much more confident I am in my abilities, both as a student-athlete and as a person. Augustana helped me realize what I am capable of through the many opportunities it offered me. I am proud of my academic, athletic and professional accomplishments, and I am excited to take on future challenges.

How did you use your Augie Choice?

I used my Augie Choice to help fund my spring internship at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. It helped pay for travel and food expenses. It was an experience I will never forget!

What will you miss the most?    

I know this may sound a bit cliché, but I am really going to miss the people. I am going to miss seeing my best friends every day, especially the three who I get to call my roommates. I am going to miss practicing and spending time with my teammates. I am going to miss meeting with professors and learning something new from them every day. I will always cherish these relationships, and I know that I have made lifelong connections.

Advice for the Class of 2024?    

Cherish your time at Augustana and enjoy every moment of your experience. Surround yourself with the people who make you happy and do the things you truly love. Take advantage of new opportunities and challenge yourself both academically and socially. And of course, make countless memories!

"Patti is a positive, constructive presence in any environment. At Augustana, she managed a full schedule, including varsity swimming, an internship in Denver, contributions to Blogustana and a rigorous course of study. I will always remember our thoughtful conversations over the past four years. I know that she particularly enjoyed her J-term experience in Dr. Emily Cranford's class, researching plants and animals in French literature. Patti is a great team member and will be an asset to any organization. I look forward to hearing about what will be next for her."

– Gillian Lederman, assistant professor, French