HFA Student Profile: Sierra Simmons
Where are you from?
I’m from Greenfield, New Hampshire. It’s the tiniest, most backwoods town ever. I have lived there since I was born. I grew up with lots of farm animals like goats, horses, chickens, ducks, and cats. My house also has lots of gardens and my family always eats organic food that we grow ourselves.
What inspired you to attend UMass?
Well, I really love the area. Western Mass is a great place to live. Also, UMass has a reputation of being a progressive school, and I wanted to be in a friendly environment such as that. I didn’t want to go to UNH because almost everyone from my high school was going there, and I wanted to see some new faces.
How did you select your major in English?
I have always loved writing and reading. It just comes naturally to me. I am also a Sociology major. Basically, I want to use my writing skills to communicate my sociological knowledge.
What is your favorite part about your classes?
The English department has a lot of really great teachers. They inspire their students to learn and take varying perspectives on their subject matter. Many of them are incredibly clever and funny, and they make class enjoyable as well as informative. That’s what I like about going to class.
What would you say is your best UMass memory?
I have a lot of great memories of playing in the snow on snow days. One snow day during my freshman year, my friend and I were walking out into the parking lot behind the Sylvan residential area. When we got to the back of the parking lot there was a gigantic bank of snow from the snowplow. On top of this snow bank was placed a big green rug, completely spread out. Many questions came to our minds. How did this get here? It must have been this morning because it just snowed last night. Where did it come from? Who would want to get rid of this perfectly good rug, and why would they choose this snow bank in this parking lot as its final resting place? Were they trying to freeze it? Did they think the snow looked too cold, and that maybe the rug would keep it warm? Were they trying to fool people into thinking the snow bank was actually a hill of grass? We didn’t know. We never learned the answer to this mystery.
Also, yesterday under a bush outside Bartlett there was a hawk eating a squirrel, completely unperturbed by the fascinated crowd of people standing 3 feet away from it. That was pretty cool too.
What do you hope to do after graduation?
Well, I am hoping to go to graduate school. I would love to be a writer for a magazine, either in print or on the web. Eventually, I want to become an English or Creative Writing professor, but I know that will take a very long time.
What advice would you give to prospective students about life at UMass?
-If you go to class, you’ll be more likely to remember to do your homework.
-Get a scheduler. Write everything in it.
-Wear sandals in the dorm showers.
-Get a job. Give your parents a break for once.
-Make your own salad dressing at the Dining Commons… they have oil and apple cider vinegar and everything!
Which would you be more likely to display at home: your diploma or your Minuteman Bobblehead?
Am I going to receive a Minuteman Bobblehead? This is news to me!
I don’t know, I think I would rather display my diploma… just so when the president comes to visit he will know he’s talking to a UMass HFA graduate. Better watch out!!