Impressing an audience is what Andy Allen loves to do, and this is exactly the skill he perfected while attending Calvin College. In his academics, extra-curricular activities and internships, Andy mastered the art of speaking to and reading a variety of audiences.

Andy, a 2009 alum, graduated with a Communication-Rhetoric degree (now titled Strategic Communication) and a Philosophy minor. Andy was a very active member in the Communications Department and wants to share with others how beneficial the experience has been to him. Andy learned to speak effectively in the classroom, and he uses those skills today in his job as an admissions counselor and athletic recruiter.

The opportunities at Calvin have made Andy competent in many areas, and his possibilities for future careers are endless. Andy’s favorite classes were Argumentation & Advocacy, Communication Ethics, Persuasion & Propaganda, and Rhetorical Criticism. He also chose to do an independent study for a month in Spain. He could not speak Spanish, but learned about cross-cultural barriers and how significant non-verbal communication can be.

Andy was also an Orientation Intern, a position which allowed him to learn quite a bit about working with a college audience. He was on the Improv Team at Calvin, and continues to do Improv to this day. He gets up on stage and makes audiences laugh. Andy also had fun being filmed in a cooking show for an upper-level media productions class. He is thankful for the leadership qualities he gained through each of these experiences.

Andy didn’t come to Calvin knowing exactly where he wanted to end up. At first he thought he would major in business; then he dabbled in theatre. He soon realized that the wide array of classes in rhetoric intrigued him. Since graduation, Andy has realized that his Calvin diploma will do more for him than he ever thought. He is thankful for his wide networks, his relationships with professors, and all of the opportunities he was given while at Calvin. For being a smaller school, the possibilities seem endless. Reflecting on his experience at the college, Andy remarks, “Calvin really is doing something better.”