Ann Richards alumnae reflect on college and coming back


Sarah Bustos-Lopez

Lyric Prikryl-Martin shares an experience she had in her first year of college. She goes to Earlham college in Richmond, Indiana.

Gus Dexheimer and Emma Foster

Twenty-four Ann Richards alumnae trickled back to the place they spent their high school years this morning–only this time they wore visitor stickers instead of plaid skirts.

As part of the Ann Richards sisterhood tradition, Alumnae Coordinator Ashley Robinson invited the graduated classes of 2013 and 2014 to return for the second annual alumnae panel to share about their college lives.

“I just remember being your shoes, and being like ‘what am I going to do with my life?'” said Tamsyn Stonebarger, Arizona State University class of 2017. Now Stonebarger is studying journalism.

Members of the graduated class of 2014 had experience to share about coming home after their first semester away.

“College is a really weird in-between stage,” said Lyric Prikryl-Martin, Earlham College class of 2018. “You’re really independent sometimes, but then sometimes you’re really dependent on your friends and family.”

In response to coming back to ARS, Prikryl-Martin said, “It feels just like I’m back in high school, only I get to wear real clothes.”

As for college surprises, she responded with three, simple words: “Dual gender bathrooms.”

After two years at college, the first graduating class of Ann Richards had some academic wisdom.

“Go to class, get help if you need it, turn in your stuff…” said Stonebarger. “And you’ll be golden,” completed Lilian Pellette, University of North Texas class of 2017.

However, Pellette was also able to share about how she recovered from her rough transition to living on own.

“I stayed in my room for like the first month, and I didn’t have any friends.” When asked how she got over her homesickness, Pellette said, “I put on my big girl panties and went out and made some friends.”

Stonebarger, having gone out of state for school had a different experience.

“Your freshman year when you go out of state  you have so much to do and so much in front of you, so many new people to meet, you don’t have time to think about home until your mom calls,” she said.

One thing both of their experiences had in common was the way they felt when they returned to ARS.

“The thing they say about ‘once an Ann Richards Girl girl, always an Ann Richards Girl girl,’ is really really really true,” said Pellette. “Every time I walk in the doors, it’s like my uniform is back on. Not in like a patronizing, condescending way: it’s like I’m home.”