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Odin McDermott, Admission Student Assistant

Odin McDermott


Admission Student Assistant

Major(s): Rhetoric, Writing, & Public Discourse (RWPD) and Sociology, with a concentration in Human-Centered Design (HCD)

Why you chose Whitman: My spring break plans to visit Whitman College were halted by COVID-19 (along with the rest of the world). However, when I reached out to a current student to ask a few questions, I was greeted with multiple pages of information on the school, Walla Walla, their clubs, and dozens of things I hadn’t even asked. That email showed me something that I repeatedly find myself learning: the Whitman community is a genuine, exciting and unique world to be a part of.

Favorite things to do in Walla Walla: I love to window shop (and too often, actually shop) on Main Street. There are so many great stores: bookstores, candy shops, toy stores, comic book shops and more. I’ve spent hours with friends just walking around, eyeing new board games to buy or farmer’s market produce to try out. And then, of course, we end the day with a delicious sandwich at Graze.

Favorite spot on campus: The Sociology major workroom! It’s a great, cozy space to get work done tucked inside Maxey Hall, the academic building that houses the social sciences. It also has wall-to-wall shelves filled with super interesting books (I might, of course, be biased as a sociology major), including a section for books written by Whitman professors. I’ve gotten a lot of writing done in that room.

Best class you’ve taken on campus: RWPD-340: Rhetorical Field Methods. This class was all about how students can study rhetoric and communication through community-engagement. We specifically used those field method skills to study the landscape of education in Walla Walla. We heard from local community members about health programs in public schools, social-emotional learning programs and community outreach initiatives. For a final project, I got to interview a community member and share my research findings with classmates, community members and even the Provost!

Favorite campus traditions: The One-Act Play Festival! Students get to write their own short plays, which are then produced, directed and acted in entirely by students. I love seeing the variety of the plays each year, from a Spice Girls origin story to a 1920s murder mystery on a cruise. The theater more broadly has tons of great shows each year, and they’re open to the public as well.

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