In her own words, Kyndall Ashe is “just a busy person and always will be.”

Ashe is the vice president of the Amherst Association of Students (AAS), a student representative on the President’s Task Force on Diversity and Inclusion, a director of the a capella group The Sabrinas, manager of the varsity volleyball team and founder and coordinator of the intramural volleyball program.

When Alisa Bajramovic and I sat down in Frost Café, we went from talking about her time on the debate team in high school to her potentially unhealthy love of Amherst Coffee to her involvement with the Reproductive Justice Alliance (RJA) at Amherst and more.

Even though this interview was supposed to be all about her, I still found her listening and engaging with me, a quality that her thesis and major advisor Ellen Boucher, an assistant professor of history, has also noticed.

On Aug. 30, 2012, a skinny kid walked through a gate at Dulles Airport in Virginia, emerging onto a bustling concourse dotted with ATMs and gaudily-priced restaurants. Mohamed Hussein, known almost exclusively at Amherst as “Mo,” strode out of the airport and boarded a van bound for Western Massachusetts.

When I asked Alejandro Niño if there was anything I should know about him, he said that he hoped he was considered a good friend. According to Siena Koh ’18, there is no doubt that this hope has come to fruition.

“Alejandro is just simply one of the best people I know and an important person in my life,” Koh said. “He’s not only one of my best friends but the best friend anyone could ask for.”

Many members of the class of 2018 will proudly boast of how they made the most of their time in Western Massachusetts; how many clubs they joined, sports they played or majors they completed. Some of them may even be right. However, most of these accomplishments pale in comparison to those of Dakota Foster, who in her brief four years as a member of the Amherst community, has truly seized the opportunities afforded to her.

I met Asha Walker before I even knew I wanted to go to Amherst. I was sitting in Valentine Dining Hall during my visit as a high school senior, and she came and sat down at the table full of softball players.

She immediately struck up a conversation with one of her friends on the team, and it took about five minutes for her to look at me and say, “Hey, you’re new.”

I first heard Irisdelia Garcia speak on the first floor of Frost Library, on Nov. 12, 2015 — the start of Amherst Uprising. Addressing the large crowd of students, faculty and staff that had poured into the library, she spoke passionately and forcefully about the experience of being a low-income woman of color on campus. Now, over 2 1/2 years later, Garcia no longer remembers exactly what she said — “it felt like a spirit took hold of me” — but continues to carry on the legacy of that experience in her work, community and understanding of her identity.