Tell me about your Dickinson experience.
Attending Dickinson was the best decision I've ever made! Growing up in Manhattan, I attended a private institution, The Calhoun School. This led me to crave an intimate atmosphere, rich in both educational and social growth opportunities. From the onset, acceptance was never an issue at Dickinson. I was true to myself, which resulted in everlasting relationships. Every aspect of being in Carlisle was nurturing, while allowing my wings the freedom to soar! The students I met on my freshman-year floor, Morgan A-2, helped built a foundation of trust; my sophomore season focused on my path as a psychology major; and serving as an R.A. in Drayer during my junior year still resonates with me as major leadership position on campus. My senior stint in McKinney suites was the coup de grace!
Can you speak to how Dickinson’s useful liberal-arts education helped you in your life?
I run a strategic media-relations consultancy, KBERG Media. In my industry, public relations, succinctness is the essence of powerful communication, and the ability to feed off and collaborate with others in various, complex situations is critical. My experiences of deep, intense problem-solving with fellow Dickinsonians in diverse contexts have shaped my positive outlook on life and have led me to develop a “Go get it!” attitude. This has helped me far more in my career than any one lesson that I could learn in a textbook or professional seminar.
What inspired your gift to Dickinson?
Coaching, mentoring, Dad duties, offering my valuable time generously and supporting others have been huge stepping stones in my maturation. I'm extremely passionate about being a role model in this arena, and as those who know me well understand, the opportunity to pay it forward/give back makes this process come full circle. Nothing provides me more joy than making others smile; it's my avenue of appreciation for everything Dickinson has instilled in me to thrive!
What do you hope your gift will do for fellow Dickinsonians?
Motivate them! I want my gift to light a spark and encourage others to get enthusiastic about Dickinson. This place helps you live the life you’ve imagined!
Why do you feel that it is important to give back to Dickinson?
Time, above all, matters most! When I got into the PR industry, I immediately set myself up on the career page at Dickinson and as a key member of Dickinson Admissions Volunteer Society (DAVS) to volunteer my time in support of current high-school and college students, providing guidance, taking on informational sessions and interviews, suggesting paths of promise and much more. I'm confident that all those emails, in-person-virtual meetings, written evaluations and phone calls have paid gigantic dividends to the novices who needed that guiding light! When people give me their time, that earns my respect!
What is your favorite memory from your time at Dickinson?
Too many to name, ha! But here are a few that come immediately to mind: 1) Announcing Greek Week winners at ATS w/my co-host, Drew Snider. 2) Writing high-paying intramural columns for Dickinsonian editor Michael Diamond, where everyone mentioned had a nickname. 3) Any Saturday night in the Quad after a Centennial Conference football win and dancing on the Sig Chi hearth with Liz Kenny Stein to Madonna's Holiday. 4) Having Matty Reish coin my now-famous moniker, "Peas & Carrots.” 5) Finding willing friends in the library to (quietly) talk to while on study break. 6) Three consecutive shots at G-man to celebrate 21 on 3/5/1991. 6) Graduating with the most amazing class ever. Nothing beats our collective family!
What is one piece of advice you would give to today’s students?
Network, network, network!
For those who have never read Howards End by E.M. Forster (or who may have missed Emma Thompson in the 1992 film version), it is a book about human connection. Margaret Schlegel, the older of two cultivated, well-to-do sisters central to the story, becomes impassioned over the phrase "only connect," which carries two meanings. One is a call to unite the opposing elements within each person—what Margaret calls the beast and the monk, the prose and the passion. The other is a call to put the greatest energy into personal relations. "Only connect!" is the book's epigraph, and whenever E. M. Forster speaks as narrator, he emphasizes the value of personal relationships.
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Published June 6, 2022