EWU graduating seniors reflect on college

Students share their paths through EWU and their post-graduation plans


The Easterner

By Malati Powell, Reporter

Graduation is an exciting time for seniors, and an important milestone symbolizing a life accomplishment.

EWU graduation ceremonies will be on June 15 at the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena. Ceremonies for the College of Business and Public Administration and the College of Social Sciences will be at 9 a.m., and College of Arts, Letters and Education, College of Health Science and Public Health and College of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics ceremonies will be at 2 p.m.


Bella Chavez – Visual Communication Design Major

Senior Bella Chavez, majoring in visual communication design, described her experience at EWU as “pretty good.”

“I chose EWU because I’m from the Tri-Cities, which is two hours away … so I thought it was kinda close to home, but not too close,” Chavez said.

Chavez did Running Start in high school, so when she came to EWU, she had two years of college experience under her belt.

Chavez switched her major twice.

“I originally was going to do dental hygiene and realized I didn’t like science and couldn’t spend all day looking in people’s mouths,” Chavez said.

After realizing that she didn’t want to pursue dental hygiene, Chavez switched her major to business. She switched again because she wasn’t enjoying math classes.

“I switched to VCD. I fell in love with it and knew this is what I was meant to do,” Chavez said. “My college experience got so much better once I realized what I truly wanted to do.”

Being a college student comes with its own set of obstacles. For Chavez, being away from home was something she struggled with. She even considered going back home and attending the community college in her town. She ended up sticking through it and decided to stay at EWU.

“I think the professors in the design department are literally the best,” Chavez said. “They have made my experience at EWU 10 times better. I have learned so much from them, and they are all just great individuals who are so knowledgeable about design, but they also all genuinely care about their students … which is great.”

After graduation Chavez plans to move to Western Washington to pursue graphic design. She hopes to freelance and eventually start her own creative business.


Ethan Holman – Computer Science Major

Ethan Holman, a fifth-year senior, took a more traditional path and started at EWU after graduating from high school in Spokane.

Both of Holman’s parents earned their bachelor’s degrees. One parent went to EWU, and the other one went to Whitman College.

“To be completely honest, I was kind of lazy when I started college, and I didn’t sign up for any scholarships,” Holman said. “I got some sort of grant my first year, and then after that I’ve just been taking out loans.”

When Holman graduated from high school, he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do. His options were to either go to college or join the Air Force. Holman had a mentor who recognized that he was interested in computer science and encouraged him to pursue it.

“I decided to just come here and try it for a year … to see what I thought about it,” Holman said. “I kind of just fell into the groove of it.”

During Holman’s sophomore year at EWU, he took an introductory geology class with professor Nigel Davies. He really enjoyed Davies class, and it motivated him to minor in geology.

“I’ve had some pretty cool teachers … and some crazy ones,” Holman said. “He was probably the coolest teacher I’ve encountered here.”

Getting outside his comfort zone and meeting new people have made memorable experiences for Holman.

“Going on EPIC Adventures trips have been the highlight of my college career,” Holman said.

After graduation, Holman plans to stay in the Cheney area while working in Liberty Lake as a web developer.


Ellery Roberts – Physical Therapy Major

Senior Ellery Roberts did Running Start in high school before starting at EWU. Of her siblings, Roberts is the first to attend a 4-year institution.

“I just knew that I wanted to be a physical therapist and you have to go to college for that.” Roberts said.

While at EWU, Roberts got involved with the housing department.

“Being a part of housing has made me feel very connected here … I’ve been a CA for three years,” Roberts said. “I just feel very connected and important to the campus because I know so many people.”

After graduation, Roberts plans to take a gap year to work and save money. She then plans to attend grad school at George Fox to pursue her physical therapy career.