Alumni Spotlight

Char Miller ’75

Char Miller

“While writing my senior thesis, I realized that I loved to research in dusty archives and that being a historian would take me to those dark, dim, and intriguing places. It helped that in Claremont I had a cadre of mentors who clearly reveled in their work in and out of class, and I wanted to share in that joy.”

Shawn Coleman ’83

“In 1977, a multi-race teenager began researching colleges in the continental US. His initial list of prospective institutions did not include Pitzer. In 1978, he achieved SAT scores that garnered attention from dozens of schools that were not on his list, including Pitzer. Additional research yielded a top-five list of schools that did include Pitzer, which was ultimately selected for three reasons…”

Len Davis ’97

“In 1999, I traveled around the US at the turn of the millennium, 20,000 miles in a minivan with my best friend, using the new technology of digital video to interview strangers about Y2K and the state of the nation. I’ve been a filmmaker ever since.”

Mike Harris ’91

“After Pitzer and law school, I worked for a number of non-profits as legal counsel. In 2013, I approached Friends of Animals about developing an in-house legal program. They said yes without hesitation. Six years later the Wildlife Law Program is recognized a leading animal legal advocacy group.”

Yvette J. Saavedra ’00

Even if you’re shy, fight it, and meet new people.”

Trifari Williams ’01

“Don’t be afraid to reach out and talk to people you think are out of your league.”

Mark Goscenski ’05

Networking needs to be mutually beneficial. Always ask yourself how will the person I approach benefit from this interaction? And if you call someone, the first question you need to ask after you say hello is, “Am I catching you in the middle of something? Do you have a moment to talk? I know you’re busy and I don’t want to waste your time.”

Nick Lopez ’07

“One way to get the most out of networking is to step out of your comfort zone and make genuine attempts to connect with people on a personal level. The rest usually takes care of itself. Making genuine connections through honest conversation is how the best networks get built.” 

Sylvie Froncek ’11

“I started working at a ropes course at Cornell University almost by accident when I was 15 years old. While at Pitzer, I led Orientation Adventures, Pitzer Outdoor Adventure trips and spent hours at the Green Bike Program, all of which solidified my love for outdoor education and team-building. Those experiences and more led me to jobs as a bicycle mechanic, tour guide, and an Outward Bound instructor. The skills that I was able to hone by following my passions have brought me to this particular work as an educator, mentor, and mechanic.” 

Liz Scherffius ’13

“I was a staff writer on The Peel my senior year at Pitzer, and I worked as a foreign correspondent in South America my first few years after college. I pursued my master’s degree at the Columbia School of Journalism, where I ultimately made the switch from producing news to documentary film.”

Gabriel Madrid ’17

“My favorite class was Introduction to Sociology. I learned to apply sociological concepts to everyday life to better understand how society affects individual behavior. My positive experience influenced me to declare sociology as a major.”

Carlos G. Perrett ’18

“My most memorable Pitzer moment is traveling to Ecuador with the IGLAS cohort my first year. We played an awesome soccer game with locals and Pitzer faculty. ”

Cindy Lou Onyekwelu ’18

“Always look for conferences that relate to your interests to go to and ask as many questions as possible!”