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Casey Cusano ’17

Forester Casey Cusano ’17 spent her freshman year at the University of Colorado-Boulder because she thought she wanted a big school and to be as far away as possible from Chicago, her hometown. But she was wrong.

Cusano transferred to Lake Forest College for her first semester of her sophomore year—and has never looked back. This biology major and sociology and anthropology minor, Forester guide, and member of Alpha Phi and Tri Beta is a Forester you should know. 

Q: What drew you to Lake Forest College?

A: “I wasn’t happy at Boulder. I didn’t get the sense of community I was looking for. When I came to Lake Forest College for my tour, my tour guide said hi to about 75 people. I didn’t know 75 people at Boulder. I was like, ‘Wow. They all know each other here.’ There are a lot of people involved here, too, which is something I did in high school and wanted to continue in college. I really wanted the sense of community and the outstanding academics, especially in the sciences. I originally thought I wanted to go far, far away for college, but I couldn’t really leave the city. I just love it too much.” 

Q: Have you had experiences here—besides your classes—that have helped prepare you for your future career?

A: “Greek life is a really big one for me. I’ve had a lot of leadership experience in Alpha Phi I don’t think I would have gotten otherwise. I also do a program through the sorority where we go to Butler University on a leadership building week called ‘Emerging Leader Institute.’ From there I learned conflict resolution skills and how to be more articulate. I’ve used those skills in my classes in group projects and in interviews. Greek life also gave me a sense of community and the strong bonds I was looking for.” 

Q: What do you do in your free time?

A: “I have an internship at Elite Wellness, a wholistic medicine facility, so I don’t really have a lot of free time. But when I do, I like catching up with my friends and hanging out with my family in Chicago. Going into the city is always big for me. I’ve begun exploring Evanston, too, and the beach in Lake Forest is awesome.”

Q: What are your plans after graduation?

A: “I hope to go to graduate school for a nursing program—I’m looking at the one at Rush University Medical Center. If that doesn’t work out, I’ll look into a nursing career or a career in wholistic medicine, like chiropractor. I’m not 100 percent sure yet.”

Q: Any advice for new students?

A: “Take advantage of all the resources on campus. The Gates Center, if you want to get involved, is great. The Career Advancement Center has really helped me, too. Use your advisors—I went to my biology department advisor to find an internship and I absolutely love it. Don’t be afraid to venture out of your comfort zone.” 

Q: Parting words?

A: “Enjoy your time here. I’m a senior and I cannot believe it. I don’t want to leave. Lake Forest has been a big part of my life and I’m going to be sad to leave.”