The NESCAC is brimming with talented student-athletes and the "Friday Feature" is a way for fans to get to know them throughout the academic year. The conference introduces Bates' Walter Washington, a football player who hopes to make a global impact.
Walter Washington, Bates College
Rockland, N.Y./Kents Hill School
Minor: Rhetoric, Music
Why did you choose to attend Bates College?
Bates is a place like no other. I realize that I am a bit biased, but truly from the moment I stepped on campus, I felt like I was supposed to be here. The institution gives you the opportunity to do everything you want to do, all while giving you the resources to make sure you are at your best while doing it. The professors are second to none and they do everything within their power to make sure that you succeed. They want to help you in any way that they can. There is also a blue-collar work ethic at Bates that I don't think exists at many other colleges. Not only is everyone working hard to be their very best, but students here are also committed to helping those around them as well, and that's something that I truly cherish about this school. The students here are also an extended part of my family, there's a closeness that exists here amongst the students and I've made friends that I know will be around for a lifetime.
What is your dream job/career? Why?
Since I was a child, I've always wanted to be President of the United States because I thought I could change the world. More recently, in the past few years, my infatuation with change on a worldwide scale has been overshadowed by the need for change in underprivileged and disenfranchised communities, and how the law could apply to different types of people in different places. It is that very change needed that has cultivated and flourished in my desire to become a lawyer. Due to significant discrepancies within the justice system, it is my desire to assist people from all different ethnic groups and socioeconomic backgrounds. Hopefully by helping the communities in need, my desire for global change will slowly but surely come to fruition.
What extracurricular activities do you participate in?
I play football, I am a member of the Bates College Deansmen (the college's oldest a cappella group), and I was recently elected Student Body President. All of that requires a lot of commitment, but I have a lot of fun being so busy. I also think it will help with my time management skills when it comes time for law school.
What has been your favorite class outside of your major? Why?
My freshman year, I took a religious studies class called The Culture Wars. It focused on the role of religion in American politics and society. We read a couple of different books in the class, however the class was centered around this book called Jesus and Gin. It was a very thought provoking read that focused on the role religion played in the prohibition era and then went on to reveal a great deal of similarities in the role religion played in other big American societal topics like gay marriage and abortion. Our professor, Jamil Drake, was a visiting professor who graduated from Morehouse, and went on to teach at Florida State. He was also a big reason why I enjoyed that class, he had a unique style of teaching and I probably would've have become a Religious Studies minor if he stayed. I have taken many more great classes at Bates, but this one was my favorite.
Who is your favorite professor? Why?
Professor Stephen Engel would have to be my favorite professor at Bates. It is just amazing how intelligent that man is and his ability to translate all of what he knows to his students. He's an open book, he loves just chatting about law, politics, or about how your day is going. He also loves making hilarious pop culture references in class, which he calls "Story Time with Engel." Most importantly, he cares deeply about his students and you can see that everyday. Each day he's the same person and I'm happy to have him as my advisor.
What internships/research projects have you participated in? What did you learn from these experiences?
I was selected to participate in the Pre-Law Undergraduate Scholars program at the University of Maine Law school. It was geared toward placing undergraduate students in 1L mock law classes, LSAT prep, and viewing court proceedings to get a real look at what all of that was like. It was probably the best experience I could have had. I learned a great deal and met a lot of amazing individuals, including the other students, great law professors, and some of the top lawyers and judges in the state. More importantly, it confirmed my desire to attend law school after graduation.
What is your favorite place on your campus and why?
My favorite place on campus is the Florence Keigwin Amphitheater. It sits right next to Lake Andrews outside of the Olin Arts Center. It's such a quiet place, and I love going there to do homework sometimes or just to sit and think.