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Rachael Ferguson '09

At the Nexus of Campus Life

“Catholic school was the best education I ever had,” says Bellingham, Mass. native and GMC senior Rachael Ferguson. “When a school has money to do what it wants, they’ll hire better teachers. It makes snobs out of kids.”

The eldest of four had to transfer to public school when her youngest sibling was born and the family moved to Northborough, Mass. At her new school she was underwhelmed with the rigor of her education. “For two years I didn’t do any work,” she says. She didn’t have to. “I didn’t listen to anybody, because I’d already learned it all.” Coming to GMC opened new horizons for this soon-to-be magna cum laude graduate.

“I like to think I strive for excellence,” she smiles.

Rachael has been involved both in and out of the classroom since she arrived on campus. Technically head resident advisor, she has spent nearly her entire GMC tenure at the nexus of administration, discipline, and community service. “I’ve been here longer than anyone in the residence life department, except for Lisa Perry,” she says. “This semester I’ve been mostly helping other RAs.”

The Green Mountain College ecological ethos has seeped into Rachael’s consciousness during her four years. The English major says, “I want to go into publishing. I want to make books.”

Her bigger goal is to “come up with a system to break down this mass publishing that we have and turn it into cottage style publishing. In most regions of the world you have most of the necessary elements to make books: you have paper, adhesive materials, something you can make ink out of—trash, soy, petroleum. You can make ink out of a lot of things. If a book is sent in digital format to these local publishers, then you’re getting a book that’s made in your region, that didn’t get shipped halfway across the world. You’re going to lose the massive deforestation. You’re not going to have unnecessary amounts of books made. Not so much waste.”

“It’s a radical idea.”

“I’m thinking maybe graduate school in the future,” she says. “It would be fun to go into Shakespeare studies and rock their world for a little while.” She lowers her chin and smiles. “I have a theory...Shakespeare was a woman.”

By Ryan Dixon '11

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