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Julia De Santis
What has been your favorite class at COA? Why?
Nature of Narrative has been my favorite class. We read ten great books in ten weeks and one independent novel. Although it was by far the most challenging class I have ever taken, I loved every minute of the work and I looked forward to our class discussions. Our class seemed to live in the library, and we really bonded over the workload. Karen's guidance and feedback launched us into great discussions. I definitely had more than one epiphany in our classroom and discussions usually continued out of class and late into the night.
What classes have you taken at COA?
Nature of Narrative
Changing Schools, Changing Society
Entrepreneurial Finance for Sustainable Ventures
What was your favorite lesson/lecture/discussion/project at COA? Why?
I loved meeting with other students, faculty, staff, and community members at the Ashoka summit to discuss the future of COA. For three days we discussed what we could do to spread social, environmental and economic sustainability not only on COA's campus and Mount Desert Island, but around the world.
What is your dream occupation?
Oh, goodness. I have so many dream occupations, but if I had to pick one, it would be this one: I want to be a 'mom' in a sustainable community focused on orphans. Nothing breaks my heart more than the children dying from preventable, curable, and treatable diseases, or the children without parents to love them. At the same time, I am happiest when I am with them loving them and suffering with them. So, my dream occupation would be to create a safe place for children who would otherwise have no one to care for them to grow and live and love and learn.
Do you work on or off campus? If yes, where?
Yes, I work for Isabel Mancinelli and The Center for Applied Human Ecology.
What country or state would you like to visit? Where would you love to live?
Have you had an internship? If so, doing what? Where? If not, what are your plans, if any, for your internship?
No plans yet, but there a lot of things I'd like to do. I love stories, whether it's a story told in one sentence, a novel, a photograph or a movie. I would love to work with some sort of project that empowers people through storytelling. I am also interested in working with a creative arts therapist or on a farm or in a hospital.
What are your ideas for your senior project? If you have already done one, what did you do?
For my senior project, I would like to research children's homes and sustainable communities around the world, and design a sustainable family home/community with the vision to create or join one in the future.
What is one of your favorite childhood memories?
My mom used to read to us every night before bed. We didn't have cable so there wasn't much to do at night except play and read. It didn't make us cool in school (in fact, I think our lack of entertainment knowledge made us decidedly uncool), but it did instill a lifelong love for stories.
What is your favorite food to eat? What is your favorite thing to cook?
Quinoa! Although it seems like a grain it's actually a pseudocereal closely related to beets and spinach. It has so much protein and I eat it every day. It goes with everything. It's amazing.
What do you like to do when you're not doing school work?
Playing with kids, traveling, taking pictures, painting, and hanging out with friends and family.
What is/are your favorite color(s)?
What is/are your favorite flower(s)?
I really love Cherry Blossoms and Bleeding Hearts and Blue Bells, but it would be impossible to pick a favorite.
What is/are your favorite animal(s)?
What is the motto you like to live by?
'Let the beauty we love be what we do.' - Rumi
Why did you choose to come to COA?
To pursue my dreams and to meet other people working toward a better world. I love it here. The physical beauty that first caught my attention now pales in comparison to the beauty of the people!
What do you like to study?
Human Ecology ;o)
Who are your favorite writers? Poets?
Tracy Kidder, Joseph Conrad, J.K. Rowling, Jeanette Winterson, Rumi, Brian Andreas
Who are your favorite artists? Musicians?
Hootie & the Blowfish, Bon Iver, Brandi Carlile, Dave Matthews Band, Alexi Murdoch, Jack Johnson, Coldplay, Sufjan Stevens, Thriving Ivory, Rosie Thomas, Nickel Creek, The Weepies, Snow Patrol, Blue October, Third Day, The Beatles, Josh Ritter, Joshua Radin, Regina Spektor, Joshua James, and Simon & Garfunkel.
What do people say is your most marked characteristic?
My heart ... whatever that means.
What talent do you wish you had?
I wish I could fly.
What is your least favorite spice?
Do you have anything cool or unique you would like to share?
My blog! My head is full of dreams and thoughts and stories and I have to write them all down just to get through the week. At first it was for my personal sanity, but now I recognize the value of sharing stories (and life in general) with others. :)