Originally from Lowell, Mass., Tom McDonough selected UNH for its inviting sense of community. A political science and international affairs major, he will also be pursuing a master’s degree in political science at UNH. “I decided to study political science and international affairs because they complement each other very nicely, and added minors in economics, philosophy and American studies to supplement my majors and add focus in areas I was interested in,” he says.
An aspiring diplomat, McDonough learned to stretch himself socially and academically at UNH, making connections with other students and faculty and discovering professional opportunities that expanded his career possibilities. Last fall, he interned in UNH’s Semester in the City program, working in Boston for Leading Cities, a nonprofit organization connecting “smart cities” around the world. McDonough has also been a member of UNH’s Student Senate, the Socratic Society, the Outing Club and worked on campus for Admissions, Residential Life and MUB operations.
COLA gave McDonough an opportunity to explore different courses outside his political science major, classes that encouraged exploration and creativity (and, more tangibly, improved his writing, reading, analytical and public speaking skills). “In my studies, there has been great room for exploring, between trying new majors and minors, a breadth of electives, and support from advising staff to explore new subjects,” he says. “COLA is perfect for those with great ambitions and a thirst for knowledge.
“I’m a completely different person now than I was in high school,” he says. “My time at UNH has helped me to become a lot more comfortable being social and vulnerable, and I am so grateful for all of the connections I’ve been able to make.”