Hometown: Montclair, N.J.
High School: Montclair High School
Major: English Literature
Last Movie Seen in Theaters: The Other Boleyn Girl
5 Favorite Bands: (in no particular order): The Beatles, Belle & Sebastian, Talking Heads, Rilo Kiley, Queen
Last Book Read: Lolita by Vladimir Nabakov
Hobbies/Interests: Seeing, talking about and listening to music, movies, books, arguing, exercise, going out to eat, being with friends and family
Thanks to the generous support of its young alumni, Hamilton College is pleased to name Sally Kral '10 of Montclair, N.J., as its tenth GOLD Scholar.
If you come to campus, you might find Sally hanging out in the WHCL studios hosting one of her two radio shows "Tomorrow Never Knows" or "Oh, Oh, It's Magic," but that's only if there's no live music on campus. Whether it's a campus band, the College Choir or the next show hosted by the Independent Music Fund, Sally's bound to be there. If she's not listening to music, she's probably talking about it. "Arguing with my friends about music might just be my favorite activity," she says with a smile. "Though we could argue about nearly anything and it would be fun."
Surrounded by music her entire life, you might even say that Sally is a result of her parents' musical collaboration. Her parents met at Media Sound Studios in New York City (where countless legendary musicians from the Talking Heads to Bruce Springsteen recorded). Dad was an engineer/producer immersed in technology. Mom was the hip studio manager who played pinball with Mick Jagger. Pretty cool roots for a student who spends her free time rocking out.
Sally does more than rock out, however. In only her second year on campus, she's already an accomplished English student who is passionate about her work. From studying classic Shakespeare with Professor Strout to The Emergence of U.S. Modernisms with Professor Catherine Kodat, Sally is preparing to run the gamut of course offerings in the department. She praises Professor Kodat for making her fall in love with Faulkner through her approach to teaching Light in August. "She (Kodat) really knew what she was talking about. She was super clear and I was never bored."
Good thing too, as English isn't the only thing that's piqued her interest on the Hill. Introduction to Film with Professor Scott MacDonald has led her to view films in a new way, making her "more aware of the variety of styles in film." Writing more than 80 pages on a multitude of subjects, her film journal allowed her to address a fundamental question from the audience's perspective, "Am I in it?"
So how did this rockin' English student figure out Hamilton was the place for her? Well, she's a self-proclaimed "sort-of legacy." Her uncle and two cousins attended the College. That aside, she went into the admission process relatively blind. On a college tour in the winter, Sally visited Syracuse University, but it was too cold for her taste. "It wasn't just the wind; it just wasn't the right environment for me. When I came to Hamilton I found myself forgetting about the weather. The place just warmed me up."
Though many of her classes are on the north side of campus, Sally is more of a "darksider" at heart. To feed her artistic side, she spends much of her time with friends and fellow indie-music fanatics associated with the Independent Music Fund. She helps with tech when it's needed (must run in her blood) and accommodates the needs of visiting bands. In one of the funnier instances, she ended up doing laundry for "Man Man," who came to campus last year. "It's not always glamorous," remarks Sally with a laugh, "but I love to see the backstage aspect of a show. It's fun."
Half-Colombian on her father's side, in 2010 Sally will be the first college graduate from his side of the family. "Realizing everything that my father has done in his life, without the benefit of a college education, makes me even more proud of him," says Sally. "And I'm incredibly grateful to Hamilton and young alumni for making my Hamilton experience possible." Sally is headed to England next year. With so much of modern music history from across the pond, you can bet that she'll bring some new music home to share and leave a little behind as well.
GOLD Scholars is an initiative supported by the Annual Fund, which has always provided direct support for the College's most important current priorities, especially scholarship aid. Starting this year, gifts from the GOLD Group – Graduates of the Last Decade – will specifically support students on campus. With each $15,000 increment collectively contributed, the College will select a student as a GOLD Scholar for 2007-08.