Seniors Tell All: Elizabeth McCain

Elizabeth McCain

As the spring semester draws to a close, seniors will once again don their blue commencement gowns and head off to new adventures. We asked five College majors to dish on their most memorable classes, favorite campus spots, dream jobs and what they’ll miss most about Carolina. Read more senior profiles: Lindsey Jefferies, Timothy Palpant, Gabriel Whaley and Amber Koonce.

With her degree from UNC, Elizabeth McCain hopes to continue the work she’s already begun — learning the stories of the past to help address the issues of the future. An active participant in the Campus Y, McCain served as co-president her junior year and studied the history of the organization through an independent study project. As McCain wrote in an essay for a campus publication: “It is amazing how much can be done when people gather together, as they did then and we do now.”

Hometown: Raleigh, N.C.

Major: History

Minor: Creative Writing

Most memorable academic experience at UNC: The instances that I have most enjoyed are when we get so wrapped up in an idea, so interested in what we are working on, that we forget it is for a class. This happened my sophomore year in studying generational identity. My junior year I was reading up a storm: analyzing the definition of freedom in Jamaica, Haiti and the U.S., and looking at the history of poverty in North Carolina. This past year I have been fascinated with the idea of American citizenship.

Favorite campus spot: I love many places on campus. I like the bench beside Hill Hall, because I can read while hearing orchestras and choruses practice. I like the Y building because I have spent a great deal of time there and met some of my best friends in that pink building. I like the benches behind student stores and the Arboretum because it has an atmosphere of its own.

Dream job: I don’t know the answer to that question right now. Even after four years of exploring interests, I have so many ideas about future trajectories … teaching, business, history research, writing.  I am just going to try to live my way to that answer, pay the bills and enjoy the ride.

What I will  miss most about Carolina: Without hesitation, the people. I am going to miss all the kind, intelligent and funny individuals that I have met here — and I’m going to miss having them live within two miles of me. I am also going to miss lectures and office hours — we are very blessed to have incredible professors who are very much invested in each student. I have been pushed, challenged and strengthened by the guidance of many in our faculty. For them and friends, I am so grateful.

[ By Glenn McDonald, spring ’12 Carolina Arts & Sciences magazine. Photo by Mary Lide Parker ’10 ]