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Student Snapshot: Ellie Pattillo ’23 

Ellie Pattillo

Ellie Pattillo ’23’s experiences as a double major (psychology; women’s, gender & sexuality studies), tutor, tour guide, and study-abroad student have provided her with the confidence and skills for success. But it’s the close relationships she’s forged with fellow students and with professors that have made all the difference in her time on campus and beyond. Below, she discusses a podcast she created while abroad, why she added a second major in women’s, gender & sexuality studies, and more.


Durham, North Carolina.


Psychology and women’s, gender & sexuality studies.

Clubs and organizations:

The Norman M. Eberly Multicultural Writing Center (tutor), Liberty Caps (tour guide) and College Choir.


Amy Snow Prize, Wilbur Harrington and Helen Burns Norcross Junior Prize in Psychology, Psi Chi, Iota Iota Iota, Alpha Lambda Delta and Dean’s List.

Best thing about my Dickinson experience:

The people at Dickinson have made all the difference in my college experience. I have so many amazing friends here who have become such important parts of who I am. Having their support from the beginning has been very grounding; I even met a few of them during our very first days at Dickinson at our Pre-Orientation program! I also love that Dickinson is a small school, because I always see friendly faces around campus.

Favorite book:

The Harry Potter series.

Favorite movie:

Pride and Prejudice (2005).

Favorite class:

Taking Psychology of Women and Gender with Associate Professor of Psychology and Women’s Gender, & Sexuality Studies (WG&SS) Megan Yost changed the trajectory of my college career. I had no idea I would be interested in WG&SS until I took this course, and now it’s one of my majors! Because of my positive experience in Psychology of Women and Gender, I decided to take Introduction to Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies the following semester with Associate Professor of Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies Katie Oliviero, which solidified my interest in the subject and developed my writing skills. These classes opened the door to many of my most treasured experiences at Dickinson and, most important, taught me the value of being open and curious.

Favorite place on campus:

The Waidner-Spahr Library. I surprise myself with how many new cozy spots I find every time I go in!

Favorite Dining Hall food:

All of the food at Cafsgiving!

Favorite professor:

I have had many excellent professors, but Visiting Assistant Professor of Psychology Grace Larson stands out as especially inspiring. I really appreciate the time she takes to connect with each of her students. In her Research Methods in Social Psychology class, she was always there to help but reminded us that we already had the skills we needed to succeed. She is also incredibly knowledgeable in her field, which makes for some interesting conversations!

As I kid, I wanted to be …

… a secret agent (and, if we’re being honest, I still do).

On studying abroad:

In spring 2022 I studied abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark, with the DIS program. A huge highlight for me was creating a podcast episode about how to use positive psychological theory to improve body image. My core course was Positive Psychology, so it was super rewarding to put theory I had been learning about all semester into practice! I got to work with two of my friends I met in the DIS program, and I loved that our professor gave us a lot of space to be creative, which in turn made the project a better learning experience (and more fun!)

If I could have dinner with anyone, living or dead, it would be …

… Bill Hader. I would love to pick his brain about directing, writing and acting.

On the support I’ve found through Dickinson:

A common thread I have noticed throughout my time at Dickinson is how supportive people are. Becoming a tutor and writing associate at the Norman M. Eberly Writing Center gave me newfound confidence in my writing and has made me a better student and speaker. I would not have even thought to apply for this opportunity had my professor and a previous Writing Center tutor not encouraged me to do so.

The faculty and staff here want us to succeed, and they give us ample opportunities to do this. This also extends to the students. Students at Dickinson show up for each other at plays, concerts, sports games and award ceremonies, and it makes the community stronger.

Read more Student Snapshots.


Published September 6, 2022