How To Blast Your Way Into Babson College – using a Nerf Blaster (Or a whole lot of them!)
Babson College and its highly ranked marketing and entrepreneurial programs has become a hot destination for some of our most innovative students. Over winter break, Sophie J. (Winchendon ‘18) was delighted to learn that she had been accepted to Babson College early decision. I had the opportunity to catch up with Sophie before she headed off to the NY Toy Fair, where she is going as a special representative of Hasbro – the manufacturer of Nerf. Among many other accolades, Sophie is a “sponsored athlete” for Nerf/Hasbro – and has over 16,000 followers on her Instagram account @Nerfers101.
What made you think about leaving your old school to attend Winchendon?
While I always liked school, I was bored and doing just what was necessary to get by. I was not being challenged and couldn’t see a clear future path. Then I got really excited by the opportunities in ColLABs, Service Learning, and in joining such a strong community.
What have been the highlights of your experience at Winchendon?
Every ColLAB has been a highlight in a different way. For my first one last year, I never thought that I could learn to code and build a whole website in just a couple of weeks, but I did – and added a short internship at the Dart Zone as well. I accomplished more than I ever thought that I would have the chance to. Then last spring, I was able to land an internship at Pure Storage, a data storage company, and learned so much more about marketing – which I love. I met some great people, and the team I worked for even implemented some of my ideas.
Most memorable courses?
GD (Global Dynamics) classes over the last two years have been favorites. I have been more challenged in my GD courses than I was in AP English at my old school, and I have gotten much more out of GD – especially in a becoming a better writer. I thought that I was a pretty good writer before I got to Winchendon, but my teachers have shown me that I can do much better. In addition, I am really liking AP Stats. I wasn’t going to take an AP level math course as I didn’t think that I would like it, but I am loving the course. It is like learning another language.
What are your goals as you move on beyond Winchendon?
Black and white! Continue to work hard, graduate from Babson and go into a career in business. But I like to think more broadly – which means meeting new people, stepping out of my comfort zone, and trying everything that I can.
What advice would you have for someone considering coming to Winchendon?
A lot! Pay attention to the opportunities that are unique to Winchendon – including ColLABs, Service Learning and Global Dynamics – they may not seem that important, but they can totally change your educational experience.
How did you originally get the idea of launching your Nerfers101 social media platform?
I used to play soccer year round but had to stop for health reasons. Looking for new interests, I discovered Nerf. I made my first Instagram posts and wound up connecting with people all over the world. The opportunity to engage with really cool people from all over drove my interest as much as Nerf.
How have you changed in the last couple of years?
I have a different outlook. It’s not just about setting goals and getting good grades – I just work really hard and see where it takes me, and then take advantages of cool opportunities that come up. The harder I work, the cooler the opportunities seem to be.