For senior Caden Polk, West Hall has become quite a familiar building. The St. Louis, Missouri native is a Residential Advisor for the third consecutive year in the first-year dormitory.
“West always has great individuals,” Polk says. He is also the Residential Manager for West, East Hall, Gate House and Andrews Hall, meaning he is responsible for the other RAs in these dormitories.
Being a mentor for his third class of first-years, however, isn’t the only leadership position Polk holds. He is the president of Advocates, which, according to the Colgate website, is “devoted to [the education of ] queer issues with hopes of creating support and a more gay-friendly campus. To provide visibility and activism for the civil and human rights of GLBT people.”
Polk is also a senior advisor for the Black Student Union, which requires giving the core of the Union advice and picking up slack when needed. He partakes in the National Coalition Building Institute, which, according to Polk, teaches “how to work with people different from you, promotes coalition building and facilitates conversations between people.”
In addition to these activities, Polk is part of Konosioni, the senior honor society. Polk is double majoring in philosophy and religion, which requires an even number of classes in both the philosophy and religion departments. He chose this major after loving an ethics class, but also from an appreciation for religion courses. Polk would ultimately like to impart his education on others through teaching.
When he has some free time, Polk enjoys spending time with his friends and learning the stories of other people.
“Everyone has a story to tell about different aspects of life,” Polk says. “When you first meet someone, you only really ask surface questions, and I like going past those.”
He especially enjoys talking to workers in the O’Connor Campus Center (COOP) and in Frank Dining Hall.
“You forget that they have lives outside of here,” Polk says. “I love seeing pictures of their kids and hearing their stories.”
In addition, Polk loves the television show Golden Girls. “It’s so before its time,” he says. “It’s too funny.”
He would also love to see everywhere in the world and to experience other cultures. But, he says, “I love being from St. Louis!”
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