When incoming students participate in the orientation in August, they will be treated to an original song welcoming them to Purchase College.

Written by Brtitney DiTocco, a recent Purchase graduate and SUNY Chancellor’s Award Winner for Student Excellence, the song welcomes them with a mix of empathy and aspiration. Since orientation will be held remotely this summer, she was asked history professor Lisa Keller to write a song that would reassure incoming students.

“Even though they may not see the professors, other students, or staff in person, that the college as a whole will still be there for them when they need help,” DiTocco said.

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She agreed to the challenge.

 “I could really sympathize with incoming freshmen,” DiTocco said. “The transition to college is difficult enough, so I was willing to do anything to help comfort them.”

DiTocco graduated last May with a double major in both history and studio composition, but that wasn’t her original plan. She applied late and entered Purchase undecided, fully intending to audition for the studio comp program and transfer internally.

Since she couldn’t take the music classes reserved for majors, she took history courses in the meantime.

“I decided to take history classes because I was interested in the subject, but never thought about pursuing it in college,” she explained. “I then declared what I thought would be a temporary history major but ended up keeping it and completing both thanks to the encouragement of many professors.”

Working part-time and tackling two majors didn’t leave DiTocco a lot of time to explore internships or other interests. Now, with two degrees in hand, she hopes to take some time to discover a career path.

“My plan for after college was to try out different job fields to get a better idea of what I might like to do full time,” she said. “The pandemic definitely makes this difficult but saving money by going to a state school helps to give you some extra flexibility after college.”

DiTocco may be undecided about her career plans, but she hopes to begin exploring different possible vocations soon.

Article courtesy of SUNY Purchase