Zoey Kurka

Zoey Kurka

Class Year



Arlington Heights, Illinois


English and Psychology



“The Carthage faculty are amazing. My professors taught me so much and inspired me to enjoy the work I do in the classroom. The encouragement I’ve received from them has been one of my greatest helpers at college.”

Zoey Kurka, ’25

Career goal

“After I graduate, I plan on attending graduate school for my master’s degree to become a therapist. Along with my therapy work, I hope to write books and compose music.”

How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?

“The Carthage faculty are amazing. My professors taught me so much and inspired me to enjoy the work I do in the classroom. The encouragement I’ve received from them has been one of my greatest helpers at college.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class was Creative Writing with Professor Shannon Brennan. On our first day of class, I learned a wonderful rule that has helped me with all of my writing: make mistakes. This has helped me get outside of my comfort zone and explore new ideas without being afraid of messing up because mistakes can always be fixed. This class inspired me to write more and keep a journal, so I can get all of my ideas down.”

Toughest class

“My toughest class was Research Methods and Statistics I. Even though I did well in AP Statistics in high school, it was really difficult for me to keep up with the workload. Nonetheless, I know the skills I’ve learned in that class are important for the rest of the classes I will take for my psychology major.”

Campus involvement

“I was a part of the 40 Form journaling group. Joining that group was honestly one of the best decisions I’ve made at college. I met so many great people and learned a lot about myself through journaling. I am also in a Dungeons and Dragons group that meets once a week, which has been a great way to stay connected with friends and have fun together. Lastly, I am involved in the pep band, in which I play trumpet with the rest of the band at football and basketball games. It is a lot of fun, and it is great to be able to keep playing my instrument.”

Internships or on-campus employment

“I’m a part of the video production crew. We film performances and sports events. This allows me to see more of what goes on behind the performances and events I am a part of.”

Opportunities at Carthage

“As a member of the Philharmonic Orchestra, I have had a lot of performances over the past two semesters. All of them had great pieces that I really enjoyed playing.”


“I received a music scholarship the summer before my first semester. The scholarship not only granted financial aid, but also encouraged me to take cello lessons, which have helped me greatly improve my playing. I have also received the Anton B. and Adele R. Altera Scholarship on my merit as a writer. This scholarship really means a lot to me because it shows that I am on a strong track to improve as a writer.”

Favorite moments and memories at Carthage

“One of my favorite things I did my freshman year was start a band with some of my friends. We never got a chance to perform, but it was so much fun to write music in the basement of our keyboardist’s house. I also really enjoyed the dances. It was so much fun to get dressed up and just have a great time with friends.”

Favorite spot on campus

“My favorite spot is definitely the big pile of rocks behind The Tower overlooking the lake. I love to sit there and look at the water. I remember I once stayed up all night there to watch the sunrise.”

Biggest surprise so far

“I’m probably most surprised at how much I’ve changed. It’s crazy to think back on myself from a year ago and feel like almost a completely different person.”

What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?

“My 8-year-old self would think it is so cool that I am following my dream of becoming an author and am on such a good track as an English major.”

Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?

“When I started, I expected an English major to be a lot of reading and writing, but as I’ve gone along, I’ve discovered that so much of it is about learning how to think critically and observe the world around you more thoughtfully. In terms of my psychology major, there are so many different areas of psychology to study, and each one offers amazing insight on how people think and act. As a psychology major, you get to explore many areas of psychology and gain a very deep understanding of the human mind.”

Why Carthage?

“I chose Carthage because when I took a tour, I really felt like I could be at home here and feel accepted.”