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Class of 2022: Kassidee Wright

Kassidee Wright is confident in her path after completing two capstone projects for her dual degree in Psychology and Communication — a combination she was glad to find was easy to pursue at a liberal arts college. Determined to have a career as a counselor, she will be completing McDaniel’s master’s program in School Counseling. Having traveled to Paris for Jan Term and interned at the Boys and Girls Club of Westminster, Kassidee gained plenty of professional experience both locally and internationally.

Kassidee Wright prepares to hit a tennis ball she has tossed into the air.

Kassidee Wright is a Psychology and Communication major from Pasadena, Maryland.

When I took my first step on the Hill, I was: Scared and did not know what to expect. I did not know anyone, and I had no idea what I wanted to study or what I wanted to do with my future, so I was super nervous.

The me who will ring the Old Main bell on Commencement Day is: Confident, brave, and resilient. I have figured out who I am, what I want to do, where I am headed, and I feel confident about my plans after graduation.  

Real world experiences: I had an internship at the Boys and Girls Club of Westminster my senior year and I loved getting to know all of the kids and working with them! Also, sophomore year I got to study abroad in Paris for my Jan Term for 18 days! It was definitely an unforgettable trip, and I even got to visit Barcelona, Venice, and Disneyland Paris while I was there!

My aha moment: Something I learned about myself is that if you work hard enough, you can achieve anything. I pushed myself and never gave up, and I was able to accomplish everything I set my mind to. Another thing I learned was to always do what’s best for you and not worry about what others think, because their opinions don’t matter, and nobody will remember all the tiny details of things they judged you for.

Footprints I’m leaving on the Hill: I leave my footprints mainly in Merritt Hall and Lewis Recitation Hall where I took most of my classes, and the tennis courts. I hope I have left a legacy behind of working hard and standing up for yourself and what you deserve, even when it is hard.

Faculty or staff member who most influenced who I have become: Dr. Holly Chalk has most influenced who I have become because of her encouragement and friendly face when I needed it the most. I took Counseling Psychology with her, and she pushed me to think in different ways and to really understand the content. She has been an amazing mentor and a big help in my journey toward becoming a counselor.

Best class ever: The best class ever was Cognitive Psychology with Dr. Jack Arnal. This class taught me so much and was so interesting, Dr. Arnal showing up with different coffee mugs was always fun. Although I took it half online, Dr. Arnal always found ways to make it engaging and interesting.

Took me totally by surprise: Something that took me totally by surprise was how much I enjoyed my first-year seminar called “Acting On and Off Stage.” While I had never taken a course like this before, I ended up having so much fun trying something new outside of my comfort zone that it even had me considering acting or broadcasting as a future career.

My favorite spot on campus: My favorite spot on campus is the tennis courts. Going out on the courts when it’s warm is so fun, stress relieving, and always makes my day better.

Most mind-boggling idea I learned at McDaniel: Something that I discovered that I was so surprised about was how you are able to double major so easily here — well, as long as you start at least one of the majors early in your college career.

My capstone title: Communication capstone: “Home Visitations and Relationships,” and Psychology capstone: “Antidepressants for Depression?”

What it’s about in plain talk: Communication: I conducted a study to examine whether or not the frequency of going home from school impacted students’ family and social relationships. My study reveals that the frequency of home visitations does not impact a student’s social or family relationships. However, social and family relationship satisfaction and number of home visitations is positively related to campus involvement. Additionally, social relationship satisfaction is negatively related to loneliness.

Psychology: I researched the use of antidepressant medications to determine whether or not they are actually needed or effective for most types of depression. I found that although antidepressants are effective for most types of depression, they are not needed, as other forms of treatment including therapy have just as much of an impact if not a larger impact on improvement of depression.

Tell us a little about your activities, including sports, during your years at McDaniel: I am a member of Alpha Lambda Delta, Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Mu Fraternity, Yearbook Club, and the women’s tennis team. In Phi Mu, I held the executive position of treasurer from 2020-2021, in which I budgeted and managed the incoming money and delegated where it would be spent. Joining the tennis team gave me a great group of people to surround myself with and some lifelong friends. Also, McDaniel Local gave me a great experience where I got to explore the community as well as gain a roommate and lifelong friend.

What’s next: I plan to finish my graduate program in School Counseling here at McDaniel and then become either an elementary school counselor or a high school counselor.

If you received financial aid, what did that mean for you and your family? Receiving financial aid made it possible for me to attend college and expand my knowledge and passion for working with kids and helping others. I am extremely thankful that I was able to receive this aid, and I worked my hardest to learn as much as I could and excel in my classes while doing it! Without my financial aid, I would not have had the college experience I had.

About Kassidee

Name: Kassidee Wright

Majors: Psychology and Communication

Class of 2022

"I have figured out who I am, what I want to do, where I am headed, and I feel confident about my plans after graduation."