Meet Gena | Highlander Blog

May 5, 2019

Hi everyone!

My name is Genevieve Hartman, though most people on campus know me as Gena (pronounce it like Jenna!)

I’m a senior at Houghton, with majors in English and Adolescence Education. I even managed to get in an Art minor as well. The thought of graduation is bittersweet, because while I have exciting new opportunities ahead, I also have to move on and leave behind an amazing group of people.

A World of Travel Opportunities

Since I’m about to graduate, what I’ll do after leaving Houghton is at the forefront of my mind. As an incoming first-year student, I thought I would have everything planned out by now, but I don’t, and I am pretty at peace with this. Because my Education and English majors give me so many options, I’m taking my time deciding my next step. I’m looking at options all over the world—on the West Coast, in South Korea, and close to “Houghme” in Buffalo or Rochester. I love to travel, so I know that wherever God ends up leading me, it will involve some new places.

It was my love for travel that confirmed my decision to attend Houghton. After getting accepted to Honors in London, I knew I couldn’t pass up the chance to spend an entire semester in the UK. My favorite part of the semester was getting to experience London’s many galleries for myself. I saw so many masterpieces, and learned about their historical and cultural context—and because the museums are free, I went anytime I wanted. (Then I realized I needed to add an Art minor!)

Lasting Friendships

Four years later, though, it is the people that have made me love Houghton. The roommate I first met on move-in day has become my best friend, and we’ve lived together ever since (aside from when she had the chance to travel to Tanzania for a semester). The people I went to London with are some of my closest friends: we’ve spent many a lunch cramming seven or eight people into a small booth, and many afternoons taking over the couch area in Java 101 or watching movies together.

I also spent two years working in Residence Life, and I was able to meet and work with amazing staff and a great group of residents. Even though I had to student teach and couldn’t continue being a Resident Assistant, I have stayed connected to many of the friends I made.

Finally, I have built a lasting relationship with several of my professors, because I see them in church as well as class, and sometimes I even get invitations to hang out with them and their families, which is a great change from the busyness of life on campus!

Pursuing Passions and Cultivating New Skills

My hobbies include reading and writing poetry, doing calligraphy, and playing guitar and piano. Houghton has given me the opportunity to cultivate all of these activities, and even pursue some new ones, like editing for The Lanthorn (Houghton’s literary magazine), learning graphic design and ceramics, and even doing some photography this semester. I’ve been spending my weekends borrowing a camera from the library, kidnapping a friend, and finding a new place or person to photograph for my next project.

From all this, you can probably see that I like to keep busy, so for now I’ll sign off. Next time, I’ll tell you a bit more about what life at Houghton is like, but for now, my photo project won’t take itself!