First Year Faces

Nia Williams (Col ’21) Manassas, VA

I committed to UVA not only because it’s one of the best universities in the nation (my father, brother, and sister all graduated from UVA) but also because I felt a deep connection with the African American community there, and I know I will thrive off their character and intelligence. The support of minorities at UVA is incomparable to any other University in the nation. I’ll be living in Cauthen in new dorms my first year, and I’m most excited about meeting new people and networking with people around the University. I’m also really excited for basketball season to start! I hope to somehow integrate African American studies and music into my major. A fun fact about me is that I have two different ears; one lobe is connected while the other one isn’t. Weird, right?


Janice Figueroa (Col ’21) Elizabethtown, NJ

I’m looking forward to living in Gooch my first year, and I’m most interested in studying Linguistics. While I’m anxious about the course load and being so far away from home, I’m excited to start my journey at UVA because it was one of the few schools that had all the programs I was looking for. Not many schools have Linguistics plus a global studies program and on top of that many languages to offer. When I came to Grounds, I could see myself here and I loved that UVA has such a trusting, united environment. It’s rare to see a place that has such high standards of honors like UVA. I’m definitely looking forward to getting to know UVA and solidifying my belief that UVA is a great place to be.


Ivy Mwaura (Col’ 21) North Chesterfield, VA

I will be living in Tuttle-Dunnington this year, and I can’t wait to get involved on Grounds and find out what clubs are out there for me. I chose UVA not only because it’s a well-known school but also because it has a great sense of community. Academically, I’m interested in studying biology and I know the department is strong. I’m secretly a huge Justin Bieber fan and I hope my roommate won’t mind too much if I’m often playing him!


Rebecca Alemayehu (Col ’21) Houston, TX

I was nominated for the Posse Scholarship and while looking through the six schools that I could potentially attend, UVA was the best match for me. I’m looking forward to living in Dunglison my first year, and while I’m nervous about the usual – being far away from my family especially since we are really close, and not feeling good enough at school in comparison to others doing amazing things, I’m still so excited to challenge myself as a student and as a person. UVA will allow me to explore who I am and grow as an individual. I hope to study Foreign Affairs and Global Studies (though my parents are encouraging me to pursue Computer Science)! I am also looking forward to taking French! I drank so much coffee my senior year in order to pull all-nighters and eventually developed a caffeine-resistance. Coffee now puts me to sleep!