By Stacey Greenberg ’94
Setting the Bar as Student Editor
Junior political science major Caroline Ponseti ’15 began working this spring as the first ever student editor of Rhodes magazine. The position was created to give students a voice in the magazine, and Ponseti is sure to set the bar high.
As student editor through the Rhodes Student Associate Program, Ponseti writes articles, helps to proof layouts before the magazine goes to press, and shares ideas about campus activities from a student’s viewpoint. The position fits in nicely with her interest working in political communications.
“I’m really interested in the relationship between media and the government,” she explains. She’s already got a trio of nice political internships under her belt—one with notable political couple Mary Matalin and James Carville (who worked on George Bush’s and Bill Clinton’s campaigns, respectively, in 1992), another with a federal judge in her home state of Louisiana, and yet another with Louisiana’s U.S. Senator David Vitter.
“I interned for the office of Mary Matalin as the on-the-ground point person for New Orleans. The office is based out of Alexandria, VA, but the couple now lives in New Orleans,” Ponseti says. “There was absolutely never a dull moment. One afternoon I was compiling an event profile for an upcoming speaking engagement. The next hour I was meeting Bill Clinton after driving the couple to their spontaneous dinner date with the former president. Working with Mary and James, who are two of my biggest career idols, strengthened my aspiration to enter the field of political communications after graduation.”
She spent last semester abroad in the European Studies program and describes herself as a very serious student. When not studying, Ponseti stays busy giving campus tours as a Rhodes diplomat, recruiting others to serve as diplomats, presiding over the mock government team, and serving as director of communications and development of her own nonprofit.
Yes, her own nonprofit.
Rather than hitting the beach for spring break in March 2013, Ponseti and two fellow students she met her first year as a resident in Glassell Hall, launched The Bridge, a street paper. The Bridge gives the homeless a forum to tell their stories as well as a source of income. The Bridge is the only 100% student-run street paper in the world. The paper currently has a staff of 60 Rhodes students and a circulation of 5,000.
Ponseti loves being a student at Rhodes and credits the tight-knit community with giving her the opportunity to be herself. “I really wanted a school where I could feel safe and comfortable,” she says. “I found that place at Rhodes.”