Student shares the experience of his five siblings at Winthrop and its influence on him
for the six Szeman siblings, most of whom have graduated. Junior psychology major Michael Szeman shares his experience of his family attending the university.
Why did your parents choose Winthrop as a suitable school for you all?
“A big thing was the location,” Szeman said. “We’re from Fort Mill, it’s an easy commute. Not too far, which for us is a plus; saved us some money. We also like the culture at Winthrop. It’s very inclusive. It’s small, so you get to know everyone. But it’s not too small to where you think your opportunities are limited.”
Have you come across any professors that recognized you because of your last name?
Szeman said that he has, “especially in the English department. So two of my siblings were English majors, my sister Maggie and my brother Eddie. I’ve only taken a few English courses, but all those courses I have taken, my professors have approached me and commented about my siblings.”
How does it feel to have your family attend the university?
“I honestly don’t think about it that much,” Szeman admitted. “Most of my siblings actually graduated from Winthrop before I started as a freshman, so I think we’ve each managed to carve out our own path on campus.”
“My oldest sibling Maggie started at Winthrop back in 2006, when I was just ten years old. She and my older brother Eddie would sometimes let me tag along to different events on campus (e.g. Winthrop Eagles games, DSU programs, etc.). This helped introduce me to Winthrop University at a young age.”
“The school became very familiar to me, and I definitely think that influenced my decision to come here as well. Heading into college, it was also much easier for me to network with different faculty and staff and to connect with students because many of them had known my family. Right now, it’s me and my little brother Joey, a business administration major, at Winthrop. I think it’s pretty cool knowing that one day we’ll all share the same alma mater.”
Do you feel you guys are leaving a legacy?
“I wouldn’t necessarily say that my family is leaving a legacy behind,” Szeman said. “I mean, I think it’s fair to say that we’ve each left out mark on the school, but so has every other student who’s attended Winthrop University. I’m sure our name will be long forgotten in about ten or so years, so I might just have to buy a brick and make it official.”
“However, I can definitely say that this school has had a tremendous impact on my life and a huge influence on my family. It’s given each of us countless opportunities to explore our strengths, challenge our weaknesses, and to grow as individuals.”