Chance Carter '15 thinks the Goucher community is most neatly summed up in one word: hugging. He says that if he sees people he knows while going down "Van Meter Highway," the main walkway on campus, Goucher etiquette dictates that he has to stop, have a whole conversation with them, hug them, and then continue on to his final destination. "We like to hug things out a lot," he says.
Sociability is a big thing for Chance. He says his favorite things about Goucher include hanging out on the residential quad, seeing people he knows, and enjoying life. "Everyone here is just so nice. It's just a great community," he says.
Chance recognizes that some students might worry that because Goucher is relatively small, they would see the same people for 15 straight weeks each semester. He doesn't see it that way. "Honestly, I like it because you become really close with your friends here; they become your family. You have dinner with them. You do laundry with them. You do homework with them. You wind up staying in their rooms until 5 a.m. even though you have class at 10 the next morning. Not a good idea, but hey, that's having a social life," he says.
Chance's affability doesn't preclude him from being a serious student, however. Far from it. Despite skipping a grade and having a late birthday (making him younger than many of his classmates), he already is taking a serious course load of political theory, academic writing, theories and methods of sociology, and the history of American society and culture. "There are so many classes in the academic catalog that I really want to take," he adds.
Chance feels that declaring his major in political science has been a particularly proud — and scary — moment for him. He says it was scary because he now has his college life mapped out for him, but he's proud that he gets to rattle off a list of what he's doing whenever family or friends ask what he's doing in college.
At times, he says, he is completely swamped. "For about two weeks every semester I have five papers due in the span of eight days, and a test I'll have to study for, my regular classwork, my job. But most times it's pretty manageable," he says.
Chance manages by scheduling everything: "If it's not on my calendar, I don't know about it. It doesn't exist to me. Class, work, club meetings, when I have to do laundry. You name it, it's on my calendar."
Though he has a while yet, Chance has already begun thinking about how he'll fill his time after Goucher. He says he would like to find a job in DC but live in Baltimore. "I love Baltimore. A lot," he says. He plans on getting a job on Capitol Hill as a legislative aide for a year or two, and if he likes it, then he'll stick with that. Otherwise he'll think about going to grad school. He also admits to having aspirations of running for office himself — eventually being his operative word.
For now, though, Chance is enjoying himself — during quiet moments hanging out with friends, as well as the long nights of academic crunch. "I'm loving my time here at Goucher," he says.