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Class of 2019 grads achieve great outcomes
The diverse group of May 2019 graduates came to Lake Forest College from 31 countries, pursued degrees in 33 different majors, and completed dozens of internships.
The 360 new alums left the College headed for equally diverse paths, with jobs ranging from naturalist to financial analyst to quality-control chemist at top companies, including Abbott Laboratories, JP Morgan Chase, and The Art Institute of Chicago, and graduate school placements at Cornell University, Northwestern University, and Washington University in St. Louis, to name a few.
Biology major Jeanne McDonald ’19, who received the College’s first Barry Goldwater Scholarship for undergraduate excellence in the sciences last summer, is continuing the research track she developed at Lake Forest by pursuing her PhD in evolutionary biology at Cornell University. With the ultimate goal of teaching and conducting research at a college, McDonald credits the time she spent in the lab with successfully finding the right fit for her career.
“There are so many research opportunities at Lake Forest College,” McDonald said. “I had a lot of support from faculty and I’m really grateful for that.”
Abby Samuelson ’19, a communication and gender studies double major, headed to New Orleans shortly after Commencement to begin a two-year assignment with Teach for America. “I’m so excited to teach first grade,” she said. “This is perfect for me. I’ll always be working to help people. That’s something I know I want to do based on the things I did at Lake Forest.”
A transfer from a large university, Samuelson credits the personal attention she received at Lake Forest College and experiences she had—including internships and competing in the prestigious TCU Values and Ventures Competition—with the opportunity to explore a number of different areas. “I realize now that being able to see someone else’s life improve because of the work you put in is important to me,” she said.
Moyo Tejumola ’19 is headed to New York City to work at Citigroup Inc., thanks to a connection he made with alumnus Randy Lauer ’81 during an internship with the multinational investment bank last summer.
“My experience at Lake Forest College has been a great springboard to explore passions and also solidify my base in economics and finance. It’s been a great place for me to practice things that I love and also learn things that are positive to my life and my career.”
Lauer, head of institutional sales and trading for Citigroup Inc.’s New York region, has hired both summer interns and new graduates, like Tejumola, into the full-time analyst program. “The Foresters I hire are competing against candidates from the top schools in the country, including the Ivy League schools,” he said. “They are well prepared and have what it takes.”
Viki Grayson ’18, a research technician at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, assists the College’s Career Advancement Center on its health careers pathway by participating in Speed Networking. “I made connections and got good advice about jobs at Speed Networking when I was a student,” she said. “Now I give students advice and help them make connections, which is how I got to where I am today.”
Darolyn Heim saw firsthand the growth in her son Cade Brittain ’19. “There was a huge difference between starting his freshman year to when he came home for Christmas break. It happened very quickly,” she said.
“In his time at Lake Forest, he’s done two research internships with Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science and took every opportunity afforded him to pursue his goals, included writing two published articles already. Lake Forest College was a great fit for my son.”
Brittain is working as a medical assistant at a dermatology group in Boston, thanks to a connection he made at the College, which will help him pursue his goal to attend medical school and specialize in dermatology.
“Lake Forest College has prepared me for my future in various ways, through internships I’ve had, the relationships I built with the professors, and by teaching me how to be a leader,” he said. “Honestly, it’s been amazing.”