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A Very Thankful Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving, College of Arts and Sciences students, faculty, and staff share the things that make them most thankful this holiday season.

From all of us at American University, we wish you a happy Thanksgiving!



“I am thankful for being part of such an amazing campus community for almost 20 years.”

—Danielle Sodani, director of project development and community outreach for the School of Education and the Institute for Innovation and Education


“This Thanksgiving I am thankful for my family and the health of my family. My grandpa has been really sick, and we just got some really wonderful news. I think I’m just looking forward to sitting around the Thanksgiving table with loved ones that I care about, who are healthy and happy.” 

—Lauren Hunter (BA education and international relations ’16)


“I am thankful for my family. They have been really helpful recently because I’ve had a couple of hard papers, so they have helped me talk it out. I am thankful for being able to be at AU. This is my last year, so it’s really helpful that my family has been able to help me finance through the whole four years.”

—Olivia Cessine (BA Arab world studies ’16)


“I am thankful for spaces for safe dialogues.”

—Kyle Dargan, associate professor of creative writing


“I am thankful the community that I have found here at AU and for the love of Christ that they have showed me.”

—Toby Amodeo (public health ’16)


“I am thankful for family and friends.”

—Z’ane Davis-Smith (BA musical theatre ’16)


 “I am thankful for art.”

—Gian Deak (music ’16)



“I am thankful for my friends and family who supported me through college and growing up.”

—Amanda Hodes (BA music and literature ’19)


“I am most thankful for the welcoming community that the Department of Performing Arts and the College of Arts and Sciences has provided.”

—Jess McGowan (BA musical theatre and film ’19)


“I am thankful for this year for my friends and family.”

—Phil Johnson, associate dean of research, College of Arts and Sciences


 “I am thankful for my family, friends, the Department of Performing Arts, and music”

—Camille Cote (BA musical theatre ’18)