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Sophie Reid
More Than I Imagined Seniors reflect on accomplishments and look ahead

Sophie Reid

Graduation year: 2020

High school: Roosevelt High School

Hometown: Seattle, Wash.

Majors: Political science, multimedia journalism and mass communication

Activities: Augustana Observer (student newspaper), Students for Reproductive Freedom, Sigma Pi Delta sorority, Phi Beta Kappa

Internships: Political Fellow and Communications Intern at NARAL Pro Choice Washington; Book Club Fellow at Shout Your Abortion

Post-grad plans: Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippines

Why Augustana?   

The April before I chose Augustana I was about to fly from Seattle to the Midwest for the first time to tour schools in Illinois. A week before I was supposed to leave, I panicked. Suddenly I didn't want to leave Seattle and my comfort zone. But my parents calmed me down and our trip stayed intact. That visit to Augustana swept away any doubts I had created in my head. I chose Augie because I felt at home the moment I stepped on campus. The community embraced me before I was even a part of it.

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

I am not at all where I thought I'd be. These last four years have constantly pushed me to grow and change. I never could have imagined that, four years after I committed, I would have studied away twice, been a double major, started my own club or led two other organizations. Augie gave me an environment that challenged me and allowed me to thrive. Before I came to campus, I was excited and hopeful, but all of my expectations have been exceeded.

Who helped you get to where you are now?  

First and foremost, my family, who has offered constant love and support through Facetime calls and trips home. Aside from my family, I have to thank my community that is full of amazingly kind and generous friends, roommates, SPEEDs, the Observer, professors, advisors and classmates who have always been there to encourage, push and celebrate with me.

I also thank Dr. Schwartz and Dr. Yaschur, who pulled me aside at the end of freshman year and encouraged me to pursue MJMC, Dr. Hann, who answered an email from a girl she had never met two years ago and has inspired me since. The entire Political Science Department, which always offered advice and taught me more than I could have imagined. Ella Fly, who, along with Sophia, became a family here and offered an unbelievable amount of support. Dr. Mahn, Dr. Muir, Dr. Simonsen, Peter and more—thank you for everything!

And, finally, the families of my closest friends, who have taken me in over so many breaks and given me countless beautiful memories.

Peak experience?  

My favorite experience at Augie has been fostering conversations about reproductive freedom over the last two years. It all started with the planning of a book club with Dr. Hann, Dr. Kovacs and the organization, Shout Your Abortion. I planned from the ground up a one-time book club event that ended up being three sessions because so many people signed up! Those 24 hours helped develop a passion that I now plan to pursue for the rest of my life and led me to starting a Planned Parenthood club.

What surprised you?

I was surprised most by my ability to pursue my passions in so many different areas. I didn't expect to be able to double major, work with professors in majors completely separate from my own, and get to do so many different activities. I was able to do everything I loved, and more with success, instead of having to choose only one path.

How did you use your Augie Choice?   

I traveled to Siena, Italy, fall term of my junior year to study Italian, business and art.

What will you miss the most?  

I'll miss this community more than anything. My friends who have given me so much love and have become a second family, as I've been so far away from my own. I will miss the unique and caring environment that is Augustana and the constant learning and growing that it has fostered for the last four years.

Advice for the Class of 2024?   

Say "yes" to every opportunity you're given and take advantage of the small school environment while you are here. Don't be afraid to make your own opportunities from the start. If you see a gap on campus, be confident in your ability to fill it with your unique passions and experiences.

"Sophie Reid is a leader. She doesn’t just join clubs on campus, she creates them. She doesn’t just contribute to the Observer, our student news organization, she serves as editor-in-chief. Soon she’ll join the Peace Corps, where she will represent the best of what Augustana College students offer the world. Sophie embodies what it means to embrace a liberal arts education, to not just live in the world but also to create it."

– Dr. David Schwartz, assistant professor, multimedia journalism and mass communication