Admissions Blog: At Sweet Briar, we’re all in

Posted on February 15, 2019 by Amy Ostroth

Amy Valentine's
When I came to Sweet Briar in October 2017, I remember turning off of U.S. 29, driving up the front drive and knowing that I had come home. I mean that in the literal sense, as I live right on campus, but also in an emotional sense. I remember the feeling of awe at the beauty of this place — a feeling that still occasionally catches my breath, even after more than a year. I live on a street with people I see at work every day, and I’m always grateful to be surrounded by colleagues and friends.

I have a deep appreciation for the learning that happens outside of the classroom, so when I was asked to serve as an advisor for the Black Student Alliance, I jumped at the chance. And last semester, I started spending an hour a week in the Academic Resource Center as a writing mentor.

My original life plan was to teach writing composition — life never seems to go quite where you imagine! Although I didn’t end up in a classroom, I cherish every opportunity I have to work with students.

I’ve worked at institutions large and small, and I know that an institution becomes a community when everyone makes an effort to get involved in the life of the school beyond their office. Nowhere is that more true than at Sweet Briar, where so many faculty and staff go above and beyond to support the student experience.

More than just volunteering in the ARC or advising the BSA, I love being able to go to the dining hall for lunch — sometimes dinner, too! — and seeing neighbors, coworkers and students. I love that I can attend events, from student poetry readings to Reunion Weekend, just steps from my front door. I love that I am surrounded by amazing, strong women.

Sweet Briar is a small college, but it doesn’t feel small. It feels like a family. Our faculty, staff and students are united in common purpose, and I’m proud and grateful for the opportunity to be a part of it.

Yes, our entrance drive — and all of campus — is truly magical. Take our virtual tour to see for yourself.

Want to be part of the Sweet Briar community? Visit to learn more, schedule a visit or apply today!

Amy Ostroth
Amy Ostroth is the director of communications at Sweet Briar College. She is editor of the Alumnae Magazine, writes news stories and website content, and helps keep the community informed about what is happening on campus. She lives on campus with her teenaged son, Logan, and her black Lab, Lilly.