Graduating Greyhounds 2015: Laura Biesiadecki

By Stephanie Weaver  |  Photo courtesy of Laura Biesiadecki, '15

Spotlight on

Laura Biesiadecki

Hometown

Lawrenceville, New Jersey

Major/Minor

English Major, Writing and Film Studies Minor

Campus involvement

Campus Ministry and writer for The Greyhound; I performed on McManus Theater stage in Titus Andronicus, Two Rooms, and The Rimers of Eldrich.

I also studied abroad in Cork, Ireland.

Plans after graduation

I will be attending Rutgers University’s Newark campus for the next two years, pursuing my master’s degree in English and ultimately applying to Ph.D. programs in order to get a doctorate to teach Modern British and Irish Literature.

In the meantime, I’ll be substitute teaching at Notre Dame High School and learning French.

How I chose my path

Literature has always been my passion. I have found, and continue to find, that books are smarter, funnier, and more enduring than people. Naturally, my gracious and outgoing personality inspired me to pursue a career in higher education.

My parents have been gracious enough to encourage me through years of existential questions, such as, but not limited to, What am I doing? Why did I think this was a good idea? How could you let me do this? Who majors in English? They are incredibly excited to call me “Professor” and I, in turn, am incredibly excited to hang pictures of them on the walls of my future office.

Favorite Loyola memory

Many of my favorite memories from the past four years happened in Europe. Loyola’s study abroad program is unbelievable. I was able to participate in Ulysses and Irish anthropology courses before backpacking through ancient cities with some of my best friends and eating Subway across the street from local restaurants I couldn’t afford. You wouldn’t believe how many Subway restaurants there are. It’s outrageous.

The Evergreen campus isn’t bad, either. Take my advice and grab a “GrandePassionTeaLemonadeSweetened” from Starbucks (make sure you say it like one big word) and walk across the Quad on a sunny day.

Note: The secret sidewalk between Maryland Hall and the quad is tempting, with the arching wisteria plants and the shaded seclusion. Do not be fooled, lest the wood bees get you. Stick to the open Quad, walk with friends, beware the bees, always wear sunscreen, and enjoy the view.

The professor who had the biggest impact on me and why

Dr. Mark Osteen. No question. He’s a brilliant professor who has taught me more about film and literature than I knew there was to teach. Johnny Valentine Lighting. Neurodiversity. New Historicism.  If you’re curious about any of these terms, pay him a visit. Dr. O never stops teaching.

It would be a crime if I neglected to mention the commitment Dr. Osteen has made to my personal academic success at Loyola. Ending my semester with an Independent Project was never the plan, but my single semester studying Ulysses left me wanting more. Osteen, member of the Baltimore Jazz alliance, Loyola Jazz Ensemble, acting chair of the Loyola English department, and all-around busy man, took time to meet with me for one hour every week. We discussed Ulysses, the greatest book ever written, and worked together on a paper I am extremely proud of.

My strong truth/how the Jesuit college experience shaped me

The Jesuit college experience is different. How else could I describe it?

“Strong Truths, Well Lived” is so inclusive of everything Loyola stands for, and picking one Strong Truth is difficult.

The values become ingrained so deeply in the minute of each day, it’s difficult to realize how much you and your perspective have changed until you’re thrown into a totally different world. The Jesuit values were a huge part of every English class, because the call to think deeply about critical interpretations of events and experiences is so constantly sounded. The way I dive into each piece of literature I read is extremely similar to the way Jesuits are expected to engage in their world, and I am confident that my profoundly Ignatian ability to immerse myself in experiences will carry me through a career in academics.

Shout outs to…

The roomies, Lauren, Elaine and Mary, for always throwing my laundry in the dryer and never on the floor.

JP, for challenging the world as I once saw it and making it so much better.

My parents, for looking the other way while I packed “just the books I need for school.”

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