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Senior Spotlight: As First-Time Rower, He Came to Love the Sport

As they prepare for their May 11 Commencement ceremony, Franklin & Marshall seniors look back at their four years on campus—and what's next.

Name: Brandon Schneider

Major: Double Major in Government and English (Creative Writing)

Hometown: Mount Vernon, N.Y.

Activities at F&M:

Diplomatic Congress (Student Body President); Men's Varsity Rowing (Captain); Club Council (Chair and Board Member); Ware Parliament (Deputy Prime Minister and Operations Committee Chair); Ware College House (Housing Adviser and Orientation Planning Director); Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity (Brother); Rho Alpha Sigma Honors Fraternity (Member); Life After College Success Program (Selected Participant); Budget Priorities Committee (Member).

What has been your most memorable moment or time here at F&M?

I'm not sure that I could pick just one when each and every day at F&M was packed with moments that will stick with me for a lifetime. My typical day starts down on the Susquehanna River, where I get to steal a glimpse of sunrise in between rowing drills. I'm surrounded by my closest friends while we practice for an upcoming regatta. Back on campus, I get the opportunity to attend classes taught by world-class professors who work tirelessly to challenge me, not only intellectually in the classroom, but also morally in my personal endeavors. In between all of this, as the president of the Diplomatic Congress, I work alongside dedicated administrators, trustees, and faculty members to coordinate student participation in the shared governance of the College. In this role, I have the sacred privilege and responsibility of advocating on behalf of the student body, empowering student leaders across the campus, and ultimately ensuring that F&M's best days lie ahead. It has truly been the privilege of a lifetime to have these opportunities, and I'm proud to say that I've made the most of each and every one.

What did you enjoy most about your time at the College?

Above all else, in my time at F&M, I've enjoyed endless opportunities to get involved, and the tremendous people I've met along the way by doing so. I'd never rowed before coming to F&M, but the sport quickly became a love of mine. Knowing nothing about it when I arrived, I walked onto the team and steadily worked my way up to captain. Looking back, I'm not sure what made me join initially, but I do know that if I had to do it all over again, I'd make the same decision. However, it's not simply opportunities such as rowing that I've enjoyed—it's the community at F&M. I've met some of the most devoted and caring people that I can call not only classmates and teammates, but also friends who I will have evermore. A well-rounded liberal arts education capitalizes on each moment of the student experience, utilizing every available instant, both in and out of the classroom, to help us develop. In this regard, the F&M experience is unparalleled in all that it can offer and that's what I've enjoyed most.

What advice would you give to rising seniors?

Make the most of each and every day—they're numbered. You only have so much time left in this wonderful place, so make sure that you take advantage of the things that you soon won't have access to—things that we often take for granted—such as the amazing members of the community and the endless opportunities for involvement.

What are your plans for after graduation?

As of now, my plans are still up in the air; but hopefully, I'll be rolling up my sleeves in Washington D.C. doing political work by the time this is posted.

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