Category Archives: Features

Scotlight: Melita Wiles

Aspen Rush





Introduce yourself! What’s your name, major, year and where are you from?

Hi I’m Melita Wiles. I am a senior math and physics major from Wooster, Ohio. 


What are your hobbies?

I like to bake! I have a baking business that I started in 2016 called “Baked Goodness” (not licensed). I make baked goods for weddings, graduations and more. It’s my artistic outlet. I also listen to music and I play piano. I like classical music. I also like to read. No, not like “Twilight.” I like to read nonfiction books by economists. I’d recommend “Ubiquity” by Mark Buchanan and I like hiking with my dog and my dad, Dr. Wiles.


Tell me about your IS. Why did you decide to do two instead of one?

I’ll tell you about my math one. I rated colleges on the topic of social mobility and racial equity. I chose that topic because I’m more interested in data science than pure math. I wanted to use my technical and quantitative math to help people. Education can fix a lot of things.

Don’t get me started on education equity!

I decided to do two IS-es because the intersection of my two majors is not something I’m very interested in. I’m a math major, not a data science major, but I wanted to do something with data.


What activities are you involved in on campus?

Glad you asked! Aside from writing for the newspaper, I’m a tour guide, the VP of astronomy club, a STEM Zone intern, I was on the cross country team and I worked in a research lab over the summer.


What is your biggest dream for after college?

My plan is to save the world but there are a few steps I have to take before that. I realized that I’m really interested in education equity. My goal is to join Raj Chetty in his mission of reviving the American dream. I never really believed in the American dream. I guess I sound really patriotic but that’s not what I mean. I want to do education equity research and make education more accessible through policy and through data. The work Chetty does looks at lower income communities and uses data science for good. It’s a way to take our technical background and use it to do good. I’ve been so privileged and I’ve lived a beautiful life. I had a fulfilling educational childhood because I was raised by lifelong learners. When you’re young, you’re shamed for enjoying learning but it’s because they don’t know the joy of it.

I have seen so many people who haven’t had the privilege I have had. These are attainable privileges. People deserve the same kind of opportunities or the choice to do the things I have done.


What is your advice to women looking to pursue STEM?

Seek out women mentors and people in positions of power above you. Something that has really helped me here is becoming close with women peers in other disciplines. It’s good to hear from different perspectives from different disciplines. Another big thing — this part is hard. Don’t be afraid of the guys. It took me until junior year to have this realization. Everybody has preconceptions about one another that really aren’t substantiated. I would say fake it until you make it. Flaunt faux confidence! It’ll get you places.

Tartan Day with WooSAS: An Underrated Holiday

Ellen McAllister

Creative Editor




On Friday, April 8, Wooster Scottish Arts Society (WooSAS) hosted Tartan Day. This is an annual holiday, typically held on April 6, that celebrates Scottish heritage. This year, WooSAS ordered traditional Scottish and Irish food as well as some standard American favorites from Village Catering in Smithville. The feast included pretzel bites, shepherd’s pie and whiskey glazed carrots.

         A typical Tartan Day celebration can vary in scale from small gatherings to large parades. Scottish dancing, listening to bagpipes and kilt-wearing are also commonly found at these celebrations. Tartans used to be outlawed in Scotland; the long history of cultural suppression makes it even more important to celebrate Scottish culture and history. While the Tartan Day celebration held in the Underground by WooSAS looked a little bit different, it still had many of the same traditional elements and was a great way for students to honor and celebrate Scottish culture. 

         The evening began with food and the chance to mingle with other students from the College, no matter their knowledge of Scotland. A member of WooSAS kicked things off by speaking about the MacLeod Tartan, which first appeared on campus in 1939 when Birt Babcock bought them for the pipe band. They also mentioned that the first shipment of kilts never made it to Wooster because a German U-Boat sank the ship that was carrying them; however, the second shipment arrived just in time for the band. 

         After hearing about the history of Tartan Day and the MacLeod Tartan, Bowen Ault ’25 presented the different parts of a bagpipe and told the story about how he got into playing the instrument. He told the group about the musical workings of the bagpipes and how they only have nine notes, so if a song has more than one octave the instrument can’t play it. Glenna Van Dyke ’23, the outgoing president of WooSAS, played the Scottish smallpipes, a smaller version of the bagpipes for the group since the bagpipes are too loud to play indoors. The evening rounded out with more information about Tartan Day and the history behind it. 

         WooSAS is a fairly new organization to the College that was formed right before the pandemic to encourage students to learn more about Scottish heritage and to find more dancers, drummers and pipers to continue representing Scotland in creative ways on campus. While this is the first year that they have been able to put on events, WooSAS is looking forward to doing more for everyone on campus to enjoy. The organization has shown Disney’s “Brave” and held an open house where anyone on campus who was interested in learning about bagpiping, drumming or dancing could visit to find out more. 

         Van Dyke is “happy to be able to even have a Tartan Day celebration this year, and [wants] to thank everyone who helped to make it a success!” The connection to Wooster makes the event even more special for all those involved. 

If you want to learn more about WooSAS follow them on Instagram @woo_sas or attend their weekly meetings every Thursday in Kauke 037 from 8-9 p.m.

Scotlight: Grace Robinson

Aspen Rush





Introduce yourself!

I’m Grace Robinson. I’m a psychology and philosophy double major. I’m from Cincinnati, Ohio and I’m a senior.

What are you involved with on campus?

I play the cello and I’m a member of the Wooster Symphony Orchestra. I am also in a number of ensemble groups on campus. I’m an on-and-off stick and poke tattoo artist. I’m also the President of the Philosophy Honor Society.

What has been your favorite memory at Wooster?

Party on the Green in 2019 with Soccer Mommy. It was a really nice night and I was able to spend it with people I love. Also, Soccer Mommy is fucking awesome.

Tell me a little bit about how the role music has had in your time here?

It’s allowed me to do something I didn’t think I would be able to do at Wooster. I’ve been playing since I was five, but I knew I didn’t want to pursue cello as a career. It’s been really cool to take lessons and teach lessons.

That’s so cool! Where do you teach lessons?

I teach kids from 10-16ish private lessons and it’s been a cool way to get outside of the Wooster bubble and interact with people outside of 20-something liberal arts students. There’s a lot less corduroy in the outside world.
How did you end up a stick-and-poke tattoo artist?

It started with a kit I bought on my ex-boyfriend’s Amazon because I didn’t want my moms to find out. It was a spontaneous COVID decision due to antsy-ness. It gave me a semblance of control during COVID. I started by poking myself at home. When I came back to campus for the spring semester, I started poking other people. It was a cool way to get to know other people I wouldn’t have otherwise met like Editor-in-Chief and budding hairstylist Aspen Rush.

What is your IS about?

The title is the most pretentious sounding title in the entire world: “Dichomous Logic and the Failings of Girlboss Feminism: Muliticplicity Beyond Man’s Episteme” In short, it’s basically decolonial feminist philosophy heavily inspired by research my advisor Dr. Lee McBride has done.

Who would you say has been most impactful to your time at wooster?

The philosophy department as a whole has been very important to me. I never thought philosophy was something I would do. They were so supportive and interested in hearing what I had to say. They made me see philosophy as something more than an armchair/detached discipline; shapes the way that we think and act. There’s just cool people…well, for the most part. The faculty is all great.

What advice would you have for underclassmen?

Make sure that you’re being present. There is an ethos that Wooster students have of doing something all of the time. I’m trying to enjoy the fact that I get to be here and surrounded by really incredible people. 

New Club Fosters Community for Disabled Students

Emma Shinker

Chief Copy Editor




Students gathered in Babcock Hall’s formal lounge on the evening of Thursday, March 31 for the very first meeting of the Disability Advocacy and Support Alliance (DASA). The group was officially chartered earlier this semester.

“Being a founding member of DASA feels so exciting to me,” remarked Dana Giffen ’23, acting Vice President. “The need for a group centered around the disability identity was growing stronger and stronger each year.”

Giffen, along with Ryan Seaton-Evans ’23, the group’s acting president, and Caitlin Strassburg ’23, the acting treasurer, formed DASA “so that the campus can become a more inclusive space for people no matter what their abilities are,” Giffen explained. 

Seaton-Evans and Strassburg had the idea for the group separately, and both discussed it with Giffen, who connected them and helped formulate a plan. “The idea for this organization came about from a profound lack of representation for the disabled community at Wooster, coupled with the absence of accessibility measures,” they said. “For many students with disabilities, it can be very isolating, and confidentiality measures often make it feel as though that individual is the only disabled member of the Wooster community; to feel alone in your experience can be a real roadblock to good mental health, which in turn affects the entire college experience.”

Seaton-Evans is the Accessibility Representative on Scot Council and Strassburg has worked to put on a series of “Disabled in STEM” events. They hope that, through DASA, they can continue to increase the visibility of disabled students on campus and create a welcoming community. “I hope that DASA will help provide a safe space for anyone who may need it, as well as a community of people who can support one another,” Giffen elaborated.

The meeting began with introductions and then Seaton-Evans, Giffen and Strassburg set their goals for the organization, which include both community-building and advocacy on campus. To accomplish these goals, the founders plan to host a variety of events, including hosting general meetings, organizing movie nights and coordinating a formal event. They also expressed an interest in working with other identity-based groups on campus to provide more intersectional events.

For the rest of the meeting, students were able to share their hopes and ideas for DASA’s future. Some expressed the need for a space to air grievances, a way to raise awareness about the difficulties of being disabled at Wooster or a group to host more sensory-friendly events.
When asked how they felt about being the founding members of the organization, Giffen, Seaton-Evans and Strassburg all agreed that it was “magical.” They expressed excitement about the success of the first meeting and the role they are playing in breaking down barriers on campus. Ultimately, the founders said that “our biggest hope is that DASA will outlast our tenure at Wooster and continue to grow into a strong presence on campus.”

If you would like to become involved with DASA, meetings are held at 8:30 p.m. on Thursdays in the Babcock formal lounge, and you can follow them on Instagram @dasa.woo. The organization has also compiled support resources which can be found in their linktree:


Trivia Competition for Only the Nerdiest Students

Ellen McAllister

Creative Editor




Nerdology Trivia, hosted by the Admissions Office on Sunday, April 4 was a great way for current and prospective College of Wooster students to spend time together in a fun and relaxed environment. The event consisted of four rounds of trivia play with 10 questions per round. The categories included general knowledge, recognition of different signs from various movies and TV shows and bardcore — pop music that is arranged to sound like music from medieval times. While there were smaller prizes such as Wooster gear for each round, all teams were competing for the ultimate prize: cash! 

            Students were able to create their own teams and team names, which added another level of creativity and excitement to the event. During each round, the group was shown or read a question that corresponded with the topic. Then, the teams had four minutes to work together to figure out and finalize their answers. Each correct answer was worth one point and there was an “all in” option to potentially double their points earned. Students were reminded to only  go “all in ” when they were sure all their answers were correct because even if one was wrong, the team would get zero points for that round, potentially preventing them from winning the coveted first prize. 

            While waiting for the host to tally the points in between rounds, mini trivia games called Nerd Alerts were held. This allowed the students to be engaged while waiting for the results of the previous round, giving them a chance to show off their knowledge. During one Nerd Alert, current and potential students tried to name as many Marvel movies that were released in theaters as they could without mentioning one that had already been said. For another, two students formed one all-knowing being, named Mr. Know-It-All, and were asked questions from the audience ranging in category and depth from “What is Sunflower the cat’s favorite food” to questions about how gravity and the universe works. The two students had to answer the questions by each saying one word at a time. 

            Frankie Readshaw ’25, who hosted another activity for potential Wooster students remarked “I would absolutely kill it,” in a mythology category. She was happy to share the evening answering questions with fellow and potential students. Enticed by the promise of prizes and a chance to interact in a different way, Readshaw brought her two prospective students to the trivia night after they got to experience dinner in Lowry, as well as an assortment of other activities to show all that campus has to offer. She wanted to add that “the trivia hosts were really energetic and enthusiastic, and it really made for a goofy and low-pressure mood,” something that is great when getting to know people, especially your potential  peers. 

          Team False got the most correct answers despite their name and won first place and $100 in cash to split amongst themselves. The second-place team was awarded $50, while the team that got last place did not go away empty handed, winning a sharable container of cheeseballs. 

            If you are interested in attending more fun events like Nerdology Trivia, keep an eye on the POT and look for emails from the Admissions Office.  

Cutting a Slice of Pie for Pi Approximation Day

Ellen McAllister

Creative Editor



Pi Approximation Day, a lesser-known holiday associated with pi that is just as exciting as Pi Day itself, happened this past Sunday on Feb. 27. When written out numerically, the date is 2-27 and can be rewritten and converted to 22/7, which equals 3.1428, an approximation of pi. Pi Day falls on March 14 and represents the first three digits of pi which are 3.14. The first few digits of pi are 3.14159265359, but the number continues indefinitely.

         Since the College will be on spring break on actual Pi Day, the Mathematical and Computational Sciences Club or MCS Club (previously known as the Student Mathematical Association of America Club or SMAAC), decided to celebrate Pi Approximation Day so everyone would be on campus to enjoy the day. The group set out 10 different kinds of pie in Knowlton Commons on Sunday afternoon for students to eat, with flavors ranging from chocolate to cherry crumb and pumpkin from Troyer’s Home Pantry, a bakery in Wooster. 

         Not only is the play on words a fun element of Pi Day, but “pi is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter” remarks Rekik Ziku ’23, president of the MCS Club, so pie is the perfect food to eat to represent pi. Ziku also wanted to mention that pi is an irrational number, meaning that it is infinite and a non-recurring decimal that has no pattern. 22/7 is used to represent pi in a rational and more understandable way.

When asked about why he liked Pi Approximation Day, Brendan Dufty ’22 replied that “pi is such a fascinating number and pie is so scrumptious. How could we not celebrate?” Cecelia Bagnoli ’22 also enjoyed the free pie in Knowlton on Sunday and stated, “I’m not exactly sure what Pi Approximation Day is but I do know I love a good pumpkin pie!” She was excited for the opportunity to try so many different kinds of homemade pie. Pi Approximation Day is just one of a few fun math holidays that happen every year. To learn more about them, check out the MCS Club’s weekly meetings in Taylor 206 or Babcock Lounge on Thursdays at 6 p.m. Later in the semester, the MCS Club will hold the Taylor Bowl, a bowling competition against the Physics Department, aptly named since both the departments are in Taylor Hall. 

            If you’d like to learn more about the fun events that the MCS Club holds, look for an email or flyers up around campus.