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Jack McCurdy
More Than I Imagined Seniors reflect on accomplishments and look ahead

Jack McCurdy

Graduation year: 2024

High school: Xavier High School

Hometown: Neenah, Wis.

Majors: Psychology; business administration – management

Campus activities: Office of Student Life; Rho Nu Delta fraternity; psychology research assistant; theatre, music, opera; past SGA senator and SAPB board member

Internship: Individual Advocacy Group, East Moline, Ill.

Post-grad plans: Currently applying for positions in sales and event coordination, and clinical research roles

Why Augustana?

Augie was a school that I initially toured hoping to get an idea of what size college I would want to attend, but I quickly realized how special this place is. After learning about the seemingly unlimited opportunities coupled with an environment that encouraged collaboration and stepping out of your comfort zone, I was sold.

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

In some ways, yes, and in others, not at all. I set a few goals for myself halfway through freshmen year; those goals were to have a network of supportive new friends and to work my way up to being one of the Office of Student Life directors by senior year. There is much validation in knowing that I have met both of those goals in my four years. However, I never expected I would join a Greek group that I'd become very thankful for and lead in roles such as Student Governement Association (SGA) and SAPB along the way.

Who helped you get to where you are now?

Too many to name. Dr. Szafran and Professor Marmé on the faculty front have been instrumental advisors. In the music/theatre departments, Dr. Rayapati, Dr. McNally and Shelley Cooper have been incredibly important in my life and in teaching me how to keep excelling at my hobby of singing and acting while balancing academics and other extracurriculars. 

To Ken Brill, Tia Steele and Schary Santamour, many thanks for your trust and for helping me develop so many professional skills in the OSL.

To my parents, sisters, grandparents, and extended family — none of it would have been possible without their unending support. In many ways, I will always still aspire to support and do right by them as they have done for me.

And finally, to the many friends who have been there, both at Augie and elsewhere, know that I will run out of characters here before I can name you all. Thank you for challenging me to never back down and always strive for more in all facets of life.

Peak experience?

It's hard to think of anything that tops Homecoming Week this year, where Rho Nu Delta was able to secure the win for the fourth year in a row, solidifying a perfect winning record throughout all four years. Everyone put so much time, work and effort into trying to win this year (more than any), so the moment we were named first place was truly one of the most rewarding feelings to date.

What surprised you?

Throughout all four years, I rarely if ever heard "no" from anyone. I had many big ideas and desires both in my on-campus job, in classes and as I developed as a person. Through it all, the reactions to my desires and ideas were never "we can't do that," it was "what can we do to accomplish that?"

How did you use your Augie Choice?

I used it as payment throughout the summer during my internship.

What will you miss the most?

The walks to class where I needed to plan to leave 10 minutes early because I knew I'd run into at least five people I would want to talk to. Watching as the Slough path changed with the seasons. The breeze hitting my face and the sweet smell of campus as spring finally came. 

The impromptu bonfires, movie nights and Radicle Wednesdays with friends who live five minutes away. The Sundays spent at my grandparents to do laundry, watch sports and have a home-cooked meal :)

Advice for the Class of 2028?

The two best skills you can develop while you are in college are consistency and goal-setting. From there, use them to do YOU! Whether that's starting a podcast, being a leader in a club or whatever that may be. Now is your time to fail over and over again to figure out the best version of you!

"Jack has been an integral part of music and theater productions while also being on the leadership team for OSL and succeeding in his studies in psychology. He has definitely taken advantage of each and every opportunity that has come his way. I've enjoyed seeing him grow in his talents but more importantly as a person and professional, and I can't wait to see what he ends up doing with all of his skills."

– Dr. Sangeetha Rayapati, professor, music