Toni Maisano ('14) | Communication
Extracurricular activities/organizations: Speech and Debate team, ACU Orchestra, Welcome Week Peer Leader, Welcome Week Student Director, LYNAY, Speaking Center, Lambda Pi Eta, Undergraduate Research Festival
Favorite courses: My freshman Bible classes are still two of my favorite classes. I also love the classes in the Communication Department because I really enjoy the small class size and getting to work one-on-one with my professors.
Biggest surprise about ACU: I had heard great things about ACU before coming, but I think the biggest surprise for me was simply how life-changing my time here would be. I have been so blessed by the friendships that have grown here and have learned more about myself than I ever thought would be possible.
You might also like to know: I was homeschooled K-12 and, while adjusting to college life was challenging, I met awesome people here who helped me through the process.
Advice to incoming students: Take a risk and get involved with something new. You will build awesome relationships if you deliberately surround yourself with people. ACU is a great place to find tons of student organizations to plug into. If you feel alone, don't let that stop you from getting involved somewhere but rather let that motivate you to find somewhere to serve.
Why did you decide to come to ACU?
The faculty and staff I met here really reached out to me and made me feel like ACU was a place I could both call home and also contribute to with my unique talents. My parents both attended ACU, but it wasn't until I decided to visit on a whim that I fell in love with the campus and the opportunities I would have here.
How has ACU prepared you academically for your future?
My professors have had a huge impact on my life. They have helped encourage me and see my own potential. Because my department is smaller, I have had the opportunity to work one-on-one with several professors. The opportunities that have opened up as a result of these relationships have been life changing. I have been able to travel to several conferences and present my own research as well as network with other students and professors around the country.
How has your experience at ACU impacted you?
My time at ACU has helped me better understand that the world doesn't revolve around me. College has been a perspective-shattering experience for me, in that my own perspective I brought into school has been challenged and exposed to so many different points of view. This has also changed my understanding of who God is and how I am supposed to relate to him. I have grown so much over the past few years by being here.
What have you gained through your involvement with LYNAY?
I have really enjoyed being pushed out of my comfort zone through deliberately seeking out venues to serve in. College is a really easy time to get so wrapped up in myself, and I have been blessed by LYNAY being a way of helping me not get sucked into that.
What do you hope to do after graduation?
I will begin my master's degree in Communication Studies with an emphasis in interpersonal communication at the University of Texas at Austin. I’m hoping to get my Ph.D. in Communication and teach at the university level.