Senior Issue: College Majors

Rachel Gauer and Emma Di Coio


With high school coming to an end, seniors prepare to venture off into their own career and educational pathways. The past four years have served as testing grounds for discovering passions, interests and future life goals. A group of students was selected to describe their future goals, their fields of study, and their passions behind their educational choices.


Lizzie Snyder: Luther College, Classics

Senior Lizzie Snyder has committed to Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. There, she will continue her love for swimming, as she has committed to swim for the school’s team. In addition to continuing her passion for her sport, she will also explore her intense interest in history as a Classics major, which focuses on ancient history, especially within the Greek and Roman eras. Snyder explains the details of her major and how she determined it was the best field of study for her goals. 

“I always knew I was interested in history and ancient history. I also always knew I wanted to be an archaeologist so I just did a general search for the best majors or fields related and classics stood out. It’s a very versatile major. I even considered going to law school after my undergrad and classics was one of the best majors you could have for it, but that was a quick phase and stuck with archaeology as an end goal,” said Snyder.

After her undergraduate studies at Luther College, Snyder plans on continuing her education to eventually go into archaeology.

“I plan on getting my doctorate eventually and I’d like to work as a maritime archaeologist, meaning I’d do excavations and digs of sites that are in the water, like shipwrecks. After a couple of years of field work I would  like to go back and get my teaching degree so I can work as a professor,” said Snyder.


Aiva Lemesh: SRJC, Journalism

Though Aiva Lemesh initially wanted to attend the SRJC as a psychology major, a recent experience related to journalism piqued her interest. Lemesh explains what influenced her to change her major.

“My decision was influenced by the Argus Courier reaching out to Sonoma County seniors to send in a short paragraph about our experience during [quarantine]. I decided to participate in this, and ever since then I have been inspired to continue pursuing journalism potentially for my future career,” said Lemesh. Lemesh was one of several students from Petaluma City Schools to send in their personal experiences in regards to being a student during COVID-19.

Because Lemesh is not entirely set on her journalism route, she is preparing to get real-life experience before entering the JC in the fall to get more experience and test her interest. Lemesh comments on her summer plans in regards to developing her journalism skills. 

“Currently, I am very interested in finding a summer internship in one of Sonoma County‘s local newspapers to gain experience and to see if journalism is really something that I want to commit to and pursue,” said Lemesh. 

Sophia Singer: Reed College, Neuroscience

Senior Sophia Singer has chosen to study neuroscience at Reed College located in Portland, Oregon. Singer describes her process in choosing her specific field of study. 

“I’ve always been interested in how things work and why they work the way they do. First I was interested more in technology and physics then I was interested in how the human body works with anatomy and physiology. Eventually [my interest] morphed into more of a psychology interest because I want to understand myself and other people better. The more I can understand other people the easier it is for me to get across to them. So I became really interested in behavioral neuroscience and behavioral psychology,” said Singer. 

Singer’s journey to find her passion has paid off, as she is already excited by the courses she will have to take in order to fulfill her major’s requirements.

“The school I chose had so many different classes that offered a lot of courses along that path. All of the required courses that are under my major really excited me and I genuinely wanted to learn the class topics. Unlike other prerequisites for other majors/schools,  the courses don’t feel like a requirement for me because I’m interested in learning about them,” said Singer. 


Emily Kofoid: SRJC, Dental Hygiene

Senior Emily Kofoid initially had an entirely different interest aside from dental hygiene. Kofoid originally wanted to be a veterinarian, specifically one that cares for horses. Kofoid explains how her passions slowly changed and the reasoning behind that change. 

“For the longest time I wanted to be an equine veterinarian because I love animals and I grew up having horses. But as I got older I realized I wanted to work with people in the medical field. I am close with my personal dentist and talked to him and the dental hygienist that works with him numerous times. As I learned more about it and was given the opportunity to shadow some people, I made my decision to go to the SRJC to become a dental hygienist,” said Kofoid. 

Kofoid is eager to begin her career, and notes her immediate plans after graduating from the SRJC. 

“I hope to graduate and get my dental hygiene license and find a steady job in California as a dental hygienist for children. I am very excited to move on from high school and start a new chapter,” said Kofoid. 


Maya Lopez: San Francisco State University, Nursing

Maya Lopez will be continuing her education as a nursing major locally. Though Lopez was accepted to multiple schools, including UC Davis and UC Irvine, Lopez explains why SFSU was the best option for her career path.

“I chose San Francisco State because it was the most cost effective and the atmosphere is friendly and inviting. I also like that it’s pretty close to the people that I love,” said Lopez. 

Though Lopez acknowledges her own skills pertaining to the nursing field, she also derived her interest in nursing from her grandmother.

“I’ve always wanted to do something to help people and I’ve watched my grandmother take care of people as a nurse since I can remember, so it felt natural for me to apply to nursing schools. I’m not scared of the messy stuff and if I can be a comforting presence for patients who would otherwise be alone then I’m all for it. I also love learning about the human body and how it works,” said Lopez. 

After graduating from SFSU, Lopez already has a clear plan as to what she wants to do specifically within the nursing field. Lopez explains her immediate and future end goals for her career. 

“I plan on getting my Bachelors of science in nursing and using it to work in an OR [operating room] at a hospital in the city. The beginning pay is really good and I want to start in the OR because that’s where nurses learn to be quick on their feet and it’s a great experience for a beginner nurse. After a few years, I would like to get my masters and maybe become a nurse anesthetist,” said Lopez.


Iliana Nordenso: Chapman University, Public Relations

Senior Iliana Nordenso plans on attending Chapman University to eventually enter the field of public relations. Nordenso explains the “PR hotspot” that Chapman is conveniently located in, making it a perfect fit for her career path.

“I will have lots of job opportunities and internship opportunities at Chapman because of its extensive networking and its location in Southern California,” said Nordenso. In addition to its high networking opportunities, Nordenso also explains her interest in the field and its versatility.

“I am interested in PR because it allows me to be creative and innovative while still maintaining some general business practices. I like the flexibility of interests that it allows me to explore. for example, you can do public relations for politics, real estate, the makeup and beauty industry, film, and more. I also think it is a good choice for me because it plays into some of my natural interests and skills of communication, writing, and planning,” said Nordenso.