Admittedly shy, Christina Budd ’13 has never been used to speaking in front of large crowds. But as a new student at Randolph College, she found herself compelled to step up to a microphone in front of a large audience at a student government town hall meeting.
After she stood and spoke about campus issues important to her, people approached her and thanked her for speaking up—a reaction she hadn’t expected. That lasted a week.
“I’ve learned that I do have a voice,” Budd said, reflecting on that experience and other lessons at Randolph. “I’m a naturally introverted person, but I have found that people are willing to listen to what I have to say, and they seem to respond well to it. That has given me so much confidence in myself that I never had before.”
Budd, from Roanoke, Virginia, first heard about Randolph at a college fair in high school. She took note of it because of school’s creative writing program. After one year at Virginia Western Community College, she learned about Virginia Private College Week, an event in July when people who tour at least three participating schools receive application fee waivers. She decided that would be a good opportunity to visit Randolph.
“I think it was love at first sight,” she said. “The buildings were so incredibly beautiful. I knew I would be able to learn best at a small college where I could know my professors and have a relationship with them.” Soon, she was meeting with an admissions counselor and getting advice on which courses to take during her second year at the community college to best prepare for Randolph. Budd majored in history and minored in sociology.
By the end of her second semester, Budd was involved in numerous clubs on campus and had served as an officer for some of them. During her senior year, she was the vice president of Randolph’s Circle K International, a service club. She helped the group organize participation in Relay for Life, March of Dimes, and a dance for teenagers and adults with disabilities. The group also hosts campus cleanup activities about once a month, Budd said.
She also got involved in other activities, such as Pan World Coffeehouse, an event that highlights fashions and traditions from around the world. During the winter of her senior year, Budd completed an internship recording geneological information about slaves.
Her involvement with many activities helped Budd make many friends despite being new to Randolph. “I got involved on campus through clubs, volunteering, and special events,” she said. “That’s what I did, and that’s what helped me become better known on campus.”