Gordon Scholar Does It All, From Ovid to Hagfish

Michael ’66 and Sally Gordon

One goal of the Reaching the World campaign is to raise $50,000 in financial aid endowment, and with a few more gifts we can meet that goal, thanks in part to a $5-million gift from Trustee Michael Gordon '66 and his wife, Sally, in 2005.

After several months of looking at colleges, Kimberly Parker settled on Colby as her first choice. But even though her application was accepted, she knew her family couldn't afford the family contribution portion of the financial aid package. Then she heard from Colby's financial aid office. The College had augmented her aid significantly. She'd been chosen to receive the Michael L. '66 and Sally Gordon Financial Aid Fund scholarship. "Suddenly and miraculously, the school that had remained elusive for so long became a real possibility," Kimberly wrote in a letter to the Gordons.

After overcoming her initial intimidation, Kimberly arrived with the Class of ’11 and was delighted with her choice. "I never anticipated that I would be so pleased with my college," she wrote. "Colby’s academic program is unique in that it allows me to remain rooted in a classical education while pursuing my interests in the natural sciences. I love how I’m able to translate Ovid in an intimate classroom setting on Wednesday night and dissect a hagfish in ichthyology lab the next morning."

Kimberly spent the fall semester of her sophomore year in the Colby in Dijon program. "I had a fantastic time," she said. "I began studying French at Colby, and I now find myself in advanced French courses with students majoring in the language." During her sophomore year Kimberly declared her major—biology with a concentration in neuroscience.

Last summer Kimberly did an internship at Kennebec Behavioral Health in Waterville, and this summer she will receive internship funding from Colby that will make it possible for her to work at Young and Healthy, an organization in her hometown of Pasadena, Calif., that provides both physical and mental health care for uninsured children.

Kimberly enjoys a number of activities outside the classroom as well. Through the Colby Cares About Kids program she mentors a 12-year-old girl twice a week and looks forward to continuing that relationship for the rest of her time at Colby. She is a member of Sexual Assault Allies, serving as an advocate and answering calls to the sexual assault hotline. She has participated in the Dynasty Step Team and the Colby Christian Fellowship, and she has served as secretary of the Pugh Community Board, an organization that promotes multiculturalism on campus.

"I don’t know how to adequately express my gratitude for the contributions that have enabled me to be at Colby. I would never have imagined that the right place for me was thirty-five hundred miles away from my family and hometown. Strangely, even though I’m as far away in the continental United States from Pasadena as it is possible to be, I feel very much at home," wrote Kimberly, who has even adjusted to Maine's weather: "The silent winter nights are my favorite; I love how the snow seems to mute everything.

"The academics are excellent, the campus is beautiful, and the people I’ve met and the relationships I’ve formed with them are my favorite aspects of Colby. My peers are engaged and cooperative, and my professors have been extremely supportive of my academic pursuits. I look forward to a fantastic final year."
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