Just one look. That’s all it took to spark Kesha Butler’s love affair with the UI Quad.
“On my first campus visit as a senior in high school, I distinctly remember seeing the Quad for the first time — it was spring time — and thinking, ‘Wow. This is what college looks like. It’s exactly what I had always pictured in my mind,” the 2010 grad says from Washington, D.C.
“I was a first generation college student and was awed. The old buildings. The expansive green. The odd paths cutting from building to building. The students lounging against trees as comfortably as if they were in their living room.
“And the trees. On first thought — casually placed but actually in perfect harmony with their surroundings.
"“Once I became a student, I would take early Sunday morning walks through the campus at all times of the year, always passing through the Quad to enjoy it’s collegiate beauty and greeting Alma. Fall will always be my favorite time at U of I.”
As for a favorite professor, that’s an easy call for the former political science/Spanish major, now an operations officer for the Administration for Children and Families, a division of the Department of Health and Human Services.
“Professor Ira Carmen was a legend in the Political Science Department,” she says. “I’ll never forget nervously fidgeting while being interviewed by him for a spot in one of his Supreme Court classes.
“I took two of his courses and found him to be challenging, passionate, encouraging, demanding but patient. He always expected the best of us but never belittled us.”