Exit Interview: Camille Padilla Dalmau

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Name:  Camille Padilla Dalmau

Major:  English, with minors in communication studies and international relations

Hometown: San Juan, Puerto Rico

Next stop after graduation: Columbia University School of Journalism to pursue a master’s degree

Awards and memberships: Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society

Service experience:

  • Welcome Center, teaching English to immigrants
  • Providence Center, bilingual after-school program
  • Appalachia Experience, Phelps, Ky., and Kingstown, Va.
  • Community Day

SJU activities:

  • Orientation Leader, Redshirt
  • The Hawk, Online Editor, 2012
  • Chapel Choir
  • Booster Club


  • Writing
  • Listening to music
  • Photography
  • Exploring Philly

Favorite SJU professor and why: It’s a tie between Joseph Feeney, S.J., professor of English, and J. Mike Lyons, Ph.D., assistant professor of communication studies. Fr. Feeney is my advisor — I took Craft of Language with him my freshman year and Modernism and Postmodernism my junior year. He made me question who I am as a writer and has made me realize my world-view. As an advisor, he encouraged me to pick the more interesting class, even if it was more challenging. Mike Lyons introduced me to digital journalism. He encouraged our class to explore Philadelphia and gave us the tools to tell a story.

Most interesting class and why: I took the final Art at the Barnes course back when the Barnes collection was still housed next to campus. It was different from any other art history class, because I saw paintings by Matisse, Picasso, Van Gogh, Renoir, etc., right in front of me as I studied them.

What will you tell your children/grandchildren about your SJU experience? There are so many different stories to tell! I will tell them stories about going to Appalachia, Orientation, being abroad in Belgium, and living with seven other girls. They’ll know that I made the best out of my four years here.

What, if anything, would you have done differently at SJU?

I took my first service-learning class this past semester. Now, I wish I had taken one every semester since freshman year!

Favorite spot on campus: The Post Learning Common steps and the Hagan Arena during a Big 5 game.

Favorite Saint Joe’s memory: When all of the Senior Redshirts jumped in a water fountain in front of the Art Museum steps during our last Orientation session. It was a great senior moment. We all smelled so bad afterwards, but it was well worth it.

What you’ll miss the most: I’m really going to miss the familiarity of walking around campus. I feel at home here.

How did your four years at SJU change you? (How are you different from who you were four years ago?) I have been challenged academically, socially and spiritually. I’m a stronger and more confident writer; and, I have learned a lot about the United States and its culture. I think the spiritual aspect is most important. I have questioned my faith and through that, it has become stronger. Participating in service trips and service around the area made me learn so much about myself. There are still many questions to be answered, but I feel much more fulfilled compared to when I first arrived.

How will your SJU education help you make a positive difference in the world? I think I’m much more aware of social justice issues in the United States and around the world. As a journalist, I hope to shed light on some of these issues, and also empower those who cannot tell their own story. 

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