"A liberal arts college is a place in your life where you can do and be and say anything, and the liberal arts experience affects how you're going to think and the decisions you're going to make that shape your life," says Sabrina Rose-Smith '00, a partner at Goodwin Procter, a law firm in Washington, D.C.
Hollins helped Rose-Smith fulfill her lifelong dream of becoming a lawyer, despite humble beginnings and no apparent financial means to attend college. But she knew it was possible when she met Jane Leslie Dees '91 at a college fair during her junior year in high school. When Dees heard Rose-Smith's dream, she smiled and said that Hollins would help her attain it.
A scholarship that paid half her Hollins tuition. Those years, she says, proved to be the best of her life. She had planned to major in history alone, but added a second major in classics after a single course. A class called Tragic Heroines, taught by Professor Franko, sparked a new interest. "It was something I had never even thought of. That was the thing I was so impressed with: to take a class that changes your life and changes how you see the world. I will never stop reading the classics."
She went on to Vanderbilt University for her law degree and now works as a consumer finance litigator. Whether she deals with lawsuits, compliance programs, or government investigations, the skills she learned at Hollins serve her each day. "After all those hundreds of pages of reading, I now look at information with a critical eye and look for the details that matter," she says. "Hollins taught me to learn as much as I can, and then form my own opinions."