Dedicated senior gives back to campus

Katie Roth

In “The Second Sin,” Thomas Szasz states, “People often say that this or that person has not yet found himself.  But the self is not something one finds, it is something one creates.” Senior Sami Galltin has done just that for herself.

With a smile that could light up any room, Galltin has truly found many niches here at school. She is a diversity peer educator, an admission assistant and a member of Blue Key and Black Culture Societies.

More recently, Galltin has taken on the responsibility as head RA of CASA (this includes the halls of Corr, Alumni, St. Rita’s and Austin). She also lead a fall service break trip. To many, it seems like she keeps herself quite busy day-in and day-out.

“Well, I came into Villanova knowing that I wanted to be noticed and make a difference,” Galltin said. “So at the first activities fair my freshman year, I signed up for everything I thought I possibly could handle, and even things that I couldn’t.”

But it was connecting with the right people and learning to balance her time that has aided in her success. However, prior to arriving at Villanova, it was Galltin’s dedication to dance that shaped her life.

“I would have to say that dance had the biggest impact [on me] besides my family,” Galltin said. “I’ve been dancing ballet since I was four. In high school, I danced 15 plus hours a week and started teaching dance at 16. It taught me time management and discipline. If I hadn’t had that early, I don’t think I could handle the load I have now.

“It also taught me how to interact with different people and perseverance,” she said. “I was told numerous times that dance just wasn’t my thing or that I didn’t have the right body type. But I kept with it and I’m still dancing now. It’s in my blood and keeps me going.”

In addition to all the activities that she is involved in on campus, Galltin teaches approximately five hours a week at a local dance school. Spending time with her friends also remains a top priority.

From childhood, Galltin has dreamt big.

“As a kid, I thought I wanted to do everything: a writer, a lawyer, work with advertising, an artist and then I just settled on knowing that I wanted to work for myself and be the boss.”

Life appears to never slow down for Galltin. Before coming to Villanova, she danced six days a week and taught four- and five-year-olds dance as well as was involved with the Student Council and many other groups in her high school.

It has become obvious that Galltin’s role models here at Villanova have aided her in becoming the dedicated, hard-working person that she is.

“Dr. Terry Nance and Walidah Justice are my biggest influences here,” Galltin said. “Dr. Nance got me into the communication major and inspired me to reach for nothing but the best. She’s always has good advice for me and can see a clear future even if it’s cloudy for me.

“Walidah has been my mentor since freshman year. I’m in her office everyday. She does an amazing job working with the multicultural students here on campus. I know I’m not the only one that comes to her for advice, venting, or just plain company. She really is my role model.”

Galltin would not change much if she was able to repeat the past four years. “Nothing,” she answered quickly, but upon thinking for a few more minutes recants her original answer.

“Well maybe one thing,” Galltin said. “I would spend more time with my friends. One of the reasons [that] I started doing so much was to meet new people. I am a planner and [I] live through scheduling. If I could change one thing, it would be to physically plan time to hang out with my friends. I’m trying real hard to do that this year since it’s the last year we are together.”

After graduation, Galltin plans to enter the world of organizational communication.

“All of activities I am involved in have boosted my confidence in my leadership skills,” she said. “I’ve learned a lot about myself here and that will carry over to my career in whatever I choose.”

Galltin is extremely proud of the legacy that she will be leaving at Villanova after graduation in May.

“Although I don’t know how much of a legacy I’m leaving behind,” Galltin said, “I hope that I inspired a couple of people here and there.

“I’m proud of the work that I’ve done. No place is perfect and I’d like to think that I have helped in changing some of my fellow students in a positive way.”