My name is Patrick Smart, and I am a sophomore from Morristown, New Jersey. I am currently pursuing a major in Economics and minors in the Glynn Family Honors Program, the Hesburgh Program in Public Service, and Sustainability Studies. On campus, I am involved with Student Government as the Sophomore Class President, the Hesburgh-Yusko Scholars Program, and the Alumni Development Office through ND Listens. Last summer, I had the privilege of completing the Irish Internship Program, where I spent eight weeks working at a nonprofit in Dublin, Ireland.
On campus, I am a proud member of the Fisher Hall Green Wave. Fisher Hall, obviously the best men's dorm on campus, is known for our Annual Regatta, the Fisher Regatta, where each dorm races on St. Mary’s lake to raise money for St. Adalbert’s School in South Bend. Often the best part of my day is coming back to my dorm after Class President meetings, Student Senate, or studying in the library to catch up with my close friends who live right across the hall from me. These late-night conversations, which are formed by Notre Dame’s unique dorm culture, are some of my fondest on-campus memories.
Outside of Fisher, you can find me in a booth in Hagerty Cafe, one of Notre Dame’s on-campus dining services. Hagerty has my favorite coffee on campus and is where I do most of my work for Class President, whether that be putting on our two annual dances, planning a Sophomore Class Basketball Game, or organizing a Sophomore Karaoke Night. Student government is a fantastic way to meet new people and form great friendships on campus.
My advice on the admissions process would be twofold. First, prioritize fit over a school’s name brand. This may seem simple, but you actually have to live at the college you go to for four years! Make sure you’re applying to schools where you want to spend your time and become like other members of the community. You become a lot like the environment you are surrounded by; make sure it is one of which you genuinely want to be a part! Second, you are a LOT more interesting than you realize. Often when you read sample essays online or talk to current college students about what they wrote on their college applications, it can seem super intimidating. You don’t need to have solved cancer or worked on a Supreme Court case to get into college. I’d recommend writing a bulleted list of every experience you’ve had that makes you stand out or has formed who you are. It could be the quickest interaction you had in the hallway or a thought you had during soccer practice that makes you super unique. Even the most minor experiences can represent a much more significant part of your personality and what you value.
I am so excited to be a part of the Notre Dame Admissions team to represent the place I call home! Go Irish!