Meet some of the first members of the Class of 2023!

Meet some of the first members of the Class of 2023!

Reina Matsumoto

Reina Matsumoto
Hometown: Belmont, MA
High School: Phillips Exeter Academy

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
Potentially political studies and English and World Literature, but there are so many amazing options that it’s hard to decide.

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
Photography, singing, mock trial, and social justice!

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I’m looking forward to being in a place where everyone is excited to learn and practices empathy on a daily basis in class and outside of class.

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
When I visited! During the information session, it became clear to me how passionate the school was about social justice and activism, and as I toured, I knew that the school’s dedication to sustainability and intersectionality was something of which I wanted to be a part.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
Social responsibility holds the most meaning to me, as it emphasizes how we, as individuals and as smaller communities, hold the ability to make change by using whatever privilege we have to foster intersectional support through care and action. That’s something I think everyone can and should do, even if it’s the smallest thing.

What is a fun fact about you?
I spent my fall term abroad living on a farm in England studying Shakespeare and history, and got to meet many kind sheep!

Hudson Hennigh

Hudson Hennigh
Hometown: Alameda, CA
High School: Saint Joseph-Notre Dame HS

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
Finance

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
Baseball, working out, hiking, reading, movies

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
Being with my brother Hunter – Class of 2021. Playing on the Pomona-Pitzer Baseball team.

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
After Family Weekend last year and attending the Pomona-Pitzer baseball camp.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
Social Responsibility – it’s important to help make our community a better place!

What is a fun fact about you?
My favorite Superhero is Thor.

Jesse Lopez

Jesse Lopez
Hometown: Aspen, CO
High School: Aspen High School

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
I hope to study Physics at Pitzer.

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
I love to spend my time playing the guitar, weight lifting and reading.

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I am looking forward to a new experience and the opportunity to grow as a student and an individual.

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
When I went to visit in the fall of 2017.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
The most meaningful value that I connect with would have to be interdisciplinary leaning. This value is important to me because it fits with my belief of how we should start teaching students about science and math.

What is a fun fact about you?
I love hiking Colorado’s mountains.

Rowan Hoel

Rowan Hoel
Hometown: St. Louis, MO
High School: University City High School

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
Political Studies

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
I love doing anything that involves politics and people. I was able to volunteer directly with a state senator during her run for re-election. Her staff was almost entirely female and it was so empowering being around strong, like-minded women. I thoroughly enjoy planning club meetings for a club my friend and I created called Political Awareness Club, which focuses on allowing middle schoolers an arena to become more involved in politics.

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I am most excited about the people at Pitzer! I have connected with many of the members of the incoming freshman class and they are all such driven, wonderful, creative and interesting people. I cannot wait to be surrounded by passionate people on a daily basis.

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
My aunt told me about Pitzer the summer before my junior year as she thought the core values would resonate with me well. After visiting the campus and gaining an understanding of Pitzer’s core values, their opportunities, and the people that attend, I knew that Pitzer was the perfect school for me.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
Intercultural understanding is the most meaningful core value to me. It is impossible to develop any understanding of self without the understanding of others. Personally, I have gained so much from attending a high school that is so diverse. I am the person I am because I did not grow up with people who are exactly like me.

What is a fun fact about you?
I spend a month in Canada with my family every year!

Maia Kelly

Maia Kelly
Hometown: Roseville, MN
High School: Mounds Park Academy

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
Spanish, psychology, and much much more

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
volleyball, choir, painting

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I’m most excited to take the first-year seminar, and I’m excited for all the options for classes as I move forward

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
When I visited over the summer. The campus and the people solidified my desire to attend the school.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?

Intercultural understanding. I have been in a relative bubble my whole life having only gone to small private schools. I’m hoping that as I move to California, meet lots of new people, and have opportunities to take classes about different cultures I will be able to broaden my understanding of the world and humanity.

What is a fun fact about you?
I am afraid of moths, their little hairy bodies make me feel weird.

Ryan Hardy

Ryan Hardy
Hometown: Baltimore, MD
High School: Friends School of Baltimore

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
Anthropology, International/Intercultural Studies

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
Acoustic music, diversity and equity work, running, teaching Russian

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I’m excited to learn more about the communities in the Inland Empire and spend more time outside.

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
When I saw that Dolores Huerta was the commencement speaker for the Class of 2018.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
Intercultural understanding speaks to me the most because I feel like our generation has an obligation to work towards a solution for the global problems we’ve inherited.

What is a fun fact about you?
I work at a comic store.

Kian Soltani

Kian Soltani
Hometown: Pasadena, CA
High School: Polytechnic School

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
Human Biology.

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
Tennis, Medical Research/Internships, Community Service, Cultural Clubs, Recreational Piano, and Cultural Immersion trips.

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I am looking forward to the extremely supportive and upbeat community that Pitzer has as well as the resources of the 5Cs!

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
I knew Pitzer was my top choice as soon as I had the opportunity to tour campus and get a firsthand experience of the wonderful community.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
Social Responsibility is the most meaningful core value to me because it is something that I have tried to embody into my everyday lifestyle ever since my childhood.

What is a fun fact about you?
I’ve recycled (re-pressurized) over a thousand trashed tennis balls and donated them to children that want to learn the sport of tennis.

Maggie Davis-Bower

Maggie Davis-Bower
Hometown: Bellingham, WA
High School: Squalicum High School

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
Political Science and Biology

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
Tennis, Cross Country, Piano, Teen Council

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I’m looking forward to being part of an awesome community of people motivated to make their own change in the world.

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
I knew Pitzer was at the top of my list when I did my college visit and learned about the values that Pitzer embodies as well the types of people it attracts. Right off the bat, it just felt like the right fit for me.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
The core value that is the most meaningful to me is social responsibility because I think helping students to develop into engaged and informed members of society is one of the most important tasks of college education.

What is a fun fact about you?
I love skiing, hiking, snorkeling and ice skating – basically anything involving outdoor recreation. Once I move to California next year, I’m hoping to add surfing to that list!

Aaron Wazana

Aaron Wazana
Hometown: Calabasas, CA
High School: Viewpoint School

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
I hope to design my own major that is business with an emphasis in environmental sustainability or water management.

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
I love anything I can do outside. I climb, trail run, mountain bike, and will try anything else is that realm of activities.

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I’m looking forward to the school’s strong outdoor community.

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
After I toured the school in the beginning in junior year.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
Environmental sustainability and social responsibility are the most meaningful to me because as someone who truly loves and appreciates the outdoors, I feel as though I have a responsibility to do my part in helping to maintain what I find beautiful and special about the world we live in.

What is a fun fact about you?
The photo I uploaded is of me and my beautiful mother.

Simone Paradis

Simone Paradis
Hometown: Sandy Hook, CT
High School: Newtown High School

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
Political Studies

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
I work with an adaptive sports organization where children and adults of all ages of all abilities have the opportunity to water ski on a local river. I also am involved with gun violence prevention with Newtown Action Alliance and Connecticut Teens Against Gun Violence, to make every area of our country safer for everyone.

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
The interesting classes, meeting new people from around the world, and the chickens!

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
During my tour, my guide was genuinely excited about Pitzer, which rubbed off on me, and it was the only college where the admission staff trusted students enough to let them give the information sessions. I wanted to go to a college that supported me, and it was obvious that Pitzer supports all their students.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
Student engagement – as High School Musical says “we’re all in this together.” When everyone works together and works hard, we can achieve unimaginable things.

What is a fun fact about you?
I’ve raised over two dozen gerbils since first grade, follow my Instagram page @somanygerbils to see them!

Sora Sato

Sora Sato
Hometown: Agoura Hills, CA
High School: Oak Park High School

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
I hope to major in human biology at Pitzer and go to medical school afterwards.

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
Some of my extracurricular activities include: soccer, tennis, and volunteering at a sports camp.

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I am wanting to start a fresh new chapter in my life as I leave high school. As I start anew, I would want to meet new friends and adventure out to the new world.

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
My close friend was talking about The Claremont Colleges one day. From that day, I began to do thorough research on Pitzer College. From that research, I was able to imagine myself being there for four years.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
Interdisciplinary learning is the most meaningful to me due to my passion I have for sports. From volunteering in a sports camp, I was able to utilize this important core value. The activities structured in this sports camp centered the attention into skills for listening and communication.

What is a fun fact about you?
A fun fact about me is that my form of meditation is by going out camping and fishing out in the wilderness.

Ella Flood

Ella Flood
Hometown: Anchorage, AK
High School: Steller Secondary School

What do you hope to study at Pitzer?
I am currently hoping to study psychology and/or philosophy. However, there are many areas of study that I find interesting, so my major/s are not yet set in stone.

What are some of your favorite extracurricular activities?
My favorite extracurricular activities tend to involve some kind of public performance, whether that be in the form of acting or debate.

What are you most looking forward to at Pitzer?
I am looking forward to meeting many interesting people and learning everything I can from them.

When did you know Pitzer was at the top of your college list?
I knew Pitzer was at the top of my college list after I visited the school. The term fit is used a lot in discussions about the college admissions process, but it was not until I visited Pitzer that I was able to truly understand what that term means. I was able to imagine myself happily attending Pitzer in a way that I had not been able to imagine at the colleges I had previously visited.

Which core value is the most meaningful to you and why?
I find that the value of social responsibility is most meaningful to me. Education is not only about acquiring knowledge but also about learning how to best apply that knowledge to create positive change in the world around you. A focus on social responsibility is a great way to achieve that goal.

What is a fun fact about you?
I was in a Russian Immersion program from kindergarten to 8th grade.