By Melanie Biles '18
From: San Juan Capistrano, California; Rennes, France; Sicily, Italy
Intended Major: Foreign Languages
What is your favorite subject?
In high school I took a class on marine science. I don’t know if I would ever pursue it, but I found it fascinating. Besides that, I love languages. French and Italian are my favorites.
Why did you choose to come to Scripps?
I came here for the atmosphere. Part of the women’s college experience for me is that everyone is here to learn, grow and become a better person. That said, there’s still balance in the social life because of the 5Cs. They also contribute to a feeling of diversity and multicultural interaction which I really appreciate.
Why is that so important to you?
My family is from Italy, I’ve lived much of my life in California and studied abroad in France so I know what it means to be a citizen of the world and to bring different cultures into one life. I wouldn’t be able to go to a school where everyone had the same background, outlook, identity and culture. It would be too boring.
How have you been most surprised by life on campus?
I think the most surprising thing is the independence. I’ve been away from my family before, but there’s never been quite this level of freedom. It’s really nice to be able to lead my own life based on what I want to do.
Who is the most influential person in your life and why?
I’d like to say my entire family. As I said, we’re Italian, which means that we’re always in each others’ lives, interfering in the best way possible. If I had to pick one person, though, I would say my grandpa. He taught me that with honesty you can succeed at anything. If you have to lie or cheat to achieve something in your life it just isn’t worth it. I’ve really kept that with me.
What was the most influential event in your life and why?
When I was a junior in high school I spent nine months living in France on study abroad. It’s a little bit unusual to go that young but it was the most amazing experience I’ve ever had. I learned so much about myself and the world in those nine months. Most importantly, though, France taught me that every person has a story and we can all come together to create a collective story that is so much better than any individual’s.