Hear From a Recent Alum

When you’re making a decision about where to study away, there’s nothing quite so valuable as hearing from someone who has been in your shoes. Whether you’re curious about student life, travel, or any other aspect of the Williams-Mystic community, our alumni ambassadors are here to help and are happy to share their experiences with you.

Get to know our alumni ambassadors, all recent participants in the program, by reading their bios below. Then, fill out this form to get in touch with them directly!

Hayden Gillooly S’19, Williams College ’21

Major: Geosciences

I’m Hayden and I’m a senior Geosciences major, with concentrations in Maritime Studies and Spanish. I went to Williams-Mystic my sophomore spring because I was ready for a change of pace, and wanted to rediscover my childlike sense of wonder and love of learning. It ended up being the best decision of my life, and completely reshaped the way that I live and learn. It was after Williams-Mystic that I decided to major in Geosciences because I fell in love with interdisciplinary, hands-on learning.

Devon Parfait F’18, Williams College ’22

Major: Geosciences with a maritime studies concentration

Williams-Mystic was an incredible part of my life. It sparked exponential growth that gave me the boost I needed to transition from community college to a place like Williams. I have so many great memories, from traveling coast to coast to just singing in the car with my housemates on late-night rides to McDonald’s. One of my favorite memories was when the houses came together to host a barbecue. We made vegan and non-vegan burgers, played frisbee in the sun, played a few social games and had a great time together as F’18. For me, working on assignments was challenging at first, since I had never experienced academics at this level before. However, some of my other favorite memories came from working on assignments with my classmates. We would spend time in the Carlton Marine Science Center getting work done, but also taking fun breaks that really kept my motivation high! It was the combination of rigorous academics and an amazing group of people that helped me to mature and grow into who I am today.

Alex Quizon S’19, Williams College ’21

Major: Chemistry with a maritime studies concentration

Favorite Mystic Memories:

  • Kevo (a mate) teaching me how to steer the Corwith Cramer using the stars during the Offshore Field Seminar
  • Losing pickup basketball against Tim Pusack, the Williams-Mystic Marine Ecology professor, on the California Field Seminar
  • Collecting seashells in the pouring rain at Grand Isle Beach with Stephen (lab mate) and Lisa Gilbert, the Williams-Mystic Oceanographic Processes professor, for our science project.

What I wish I’d known about Williams-Mystic before I applied:

  • The great community in all senses of the word. You get to hang out with classmates, professors, and administration and go on all sorts of crazy adventures while learning an assortment of topical issues and subjects. Cooking, driving, singing, reading, and even teaching together. There’s something in it for everyone!