Bertha Lidia Flores
Community College: Montgomery College
Area of Study: Policy Management
Involvements: Latin American Club, President’s Commission for Women and Student Life Resident Advisor
Why did you decide to enroll at a community college and then to pursue a liberal-arts education? And why Dickinson?
I chose to enroll at a community college after high school mainly due to its affordability. Montgomery College was the place where it all began for me; it was a place of endless possibilities. I was part of the Macklin Business Institute, an honors business program, along with about 30 other scholars. While doing transfer applications one of my mentors told me about Dickinson, and after looking into it, Dickinson seemed like a perfect match. I was drawn to the small classroom environment and the global focus in almost all of the classes offered. It was far away from my house, although close enough if I ever needed to make a trip back home.
Is there a particular academic experience during your time at Dickinson that stands out as most meaningful/influential?
My most meaningful experience was my junior year while being an intern for Camp Koala. Camp Koala is a Carlisle-based nonprofit that provides grieving children with the tools and resources to help them manage their grief in a healthy way, and to offer companionship in a supportive environment. I learned about this internship while being part of the Montgomery Service Leaders Program (then called Bonner Leaders). I was the assistant director, and some of my duties included assisting with the planning, recruitment and training of volunteers, and execution of its annual summer program.
How did your participation in extracurricular opportunities help you become integrated into the social community at Dickinson? And how were those extracurricular involvements critical to your Dickinson experience?
Being involved in different programs and clubs was very important in becoming acquainted with the social community at Dickinson. The people I have met along the way are among my closest friends today. There are many ways to get involved in the campus community as well as in the local community. The conversations around what students choose to be involved in are always vibrant and exciting. You meet people from all walks of life. If I had not chosen to be involved in campus clubs and events, I would have missed out on opportunities to learn something new and meet new people.
How have you been influenced by the Dickinson network, and how do you plan to give back to the college as a member of the alumni community?
I have met faculty and staff who have become my mentors, and the type of relationships we have built will continue on even after graduating. Being a Dickinsonian is being an ambassador for change who is open to new perspectives and understands the complexities of the world we live in. As an alumna, I will live up to that expectation and be an agent for change on issues that matter most to me.