Hailing from the south side of Indianapolis, Ind., Mariah Downey ’21 came to Hanover because it gave her the impression of being a welcoming community. She says, “I like the idea of the small classes because I wanted to be able to get to know my teachers and my peers. The campus of Hanover is very beautiful and I love nature.”

Mariah Downey, Black Lives Matter

A biology major, Downey has worked in the entomology lab with Dr. Glené Mynhardt, associate professor of biology. She has also been busy as a member and treasurer of the Hanover College Dance Team, a member and secretary of Sister to Sister, and a worker in the Campus Center dining room.

She says, “Spending time with family and friends makes me the happiest. Making memories with them is so heart-filling. My favorite way to spend a day off is staying inside the whole day, watching movies with my boyfriend, playing games, dancing and sleeping.”

Downey has taken the time to get close to as many people on campus as possible so she can have lifelong friendships after college. The relationships she built at Hanover made the four years easier, because she enjoyed the environment she was in when she was around these people. For Downey, the professors made the classes fun to attend and she was always excited to pick out classes for the upcoming semester.

“My advisor, Dr. Mynhardt, inspires and motivates me to be successful in my life after college. There were so many times when I thought I would fail, but when I met with her, I always left her office feeling optimistic and hopeful. We also have many similarities, so it makes it easier to trust her judgement,” Downey explains. “Another person that inspires and motivates me is my boyfriend, Terrell Anderson Jr. ‘21, who is also a student on campus. The times I feel that I can't achieve something like do great on a test, he is right there telling me how great I am and how smart I am. He has helped me with different ways to study, which has helped me get better grades. He keeps me on track to accomplish my goals.”

As she looks forward to her next steps after graduation, Downey is excited about graduating in May, advancing her relationship with her boyfriend (they are planning to get engaged this year), and volunteering and working as an animal care assistant.

“Hanover has taught me so many things about myself and I am grateful for the experience. I love you, Hanover.”