Nichole Michaletz: Choosing Her Own Adventure

Payton Van Pelt, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

There are approximately six weeks of school left. Finals, IB exams, graduation, and more are just around the corner for the majority of Notre Dame’s senior class. And once summer has rolled by again, many of them will be attending schools like UW-Madison or University of Minnesota.

Yet, someone has decided that her future goes far beyond the Midwest.

“I’ll be attending the University of Oregon, and I plan on majoring in psychology,” said senior Nichole Michaletz.

She plans on attending college about 2,116 miles away. Treading off the beaten path, Michaletz was drawn to Oregon’s outdoor appeal.

“Everybody is always doing something, and I hate staying inside for most of the winter,” Michaletz explained. “There are tons of biking paths, beaches and trails. I can always find a way to be outdoors and doing something.”

Although her choice is bold, she doesn’t deny the intimidation moving so far away entails. She’s eager, however, to be “pushed outside of her comfort zone.” There’s also the aspect that she will be immersed in a school full of total strangers blooming with fresh opportunity.  

“It’s scary and exciting at the same time,” she said. “It’ll be amazing to see and get to know a brand new state.”

Michaletz was born and raised in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Yet, she is more than ready to get out.

“I’m so sad that I’ll be so far from my friends, but I’ll be able to come home a few times, so it won’t be so bad,” she expressed. “It’s going to be an adjustment for sure. I’ve gotten really close with my whole family this year, so it’ll be hard not to see them everyday.”

Although Michaletz will miss her peers in Wisconsin, she has no desire to return after college.

She plans on making a trip to visit Oregon before the school year starts and then staying there for good next fall.

“I was in shock. It was a dream come true. It was something I always dreamed about, but I never really thought would happen. When I opened my letter, I started crying right away. It was like everything was clicking into place for me.”