Beth Pontes '17

OMEGA Club, Vice President
Mock Trial
Habitat for Humanity
Track & Field, Manager

Hometown: Holbrook
Attending: New York University

When did you start at Thayer?

I started in 6th grade. We would always drive by the campus, and at the time I was really into Harry Potter, and I thought the campus looked like Hogwarts, so I asked if I could apply. Once I got in I visited and I really liked it.

What were your favorite classes at Thayer?

Freshman year World History with Mr. Dunne was one of my favorite classes. It was the first time I learned anything about something other than the United States. I really liked AP US History with Mr Donnelly. I got to see American History with a different lens.

What is your Global Scholar Capstone project?

I’m creating a website for an organization called The Cha de Matias, which works with at risk youth in Cape Verde.

What are your plans next year?

I’m going to NYU, and majoring in social work. Ever since I was young I’ve cared about things being fair for people and I was always concerned about social justice, but I never had a word for what I wanted to do. One day my boss at a summer camp for inner city kids, suggested I look into social work. Once I figured it out, it made perfect sense.

How did College Counseling assist you in finding the best school for you?

When my counselor first asked me where I wanted to go, I had no clue. She put NYU on my list and once I got in and learned more about their global studies and social work program it seemed like a great fit.

What's your favorite/most influential book that you read at Thayer?

We read Mountains to Mountains in Global Scholars Capstone. It was about public health and how poverty impacts every aspect of someone’s life. That was pretty eye-opening.

If you could give advice to incoming freshmen, what would it be?

Get involved in everything. Freshman year is important to get your GPA up, but in the long run that’s not really what matters. Don’t be afraid to go for leadership positions.

What’s your favorite memory from Thayer as you graduate?

I went to the Dominican Republic with Mr. Lanagan and Ms. Lodge in Middle School. That was the first time I traveled without my parents. We did community service. I really enjoyed that and it sparked my interest in service and social justice.

What's an interesting fact about you that people would be surprised to hear?

I have learned 5 languages: English, Cape Verdean creole, Portuguese, Japanese, Spanish. But I am not fluent in all of them.