Meet #Rowan2026: Incoming Students Look Forward to Clubs, Sports Teams, New Friends

Rowan University drone footage from above.

Today we feature incoming Exploratory Studies first year students Kelly Hector and Olivia Szumloz (she/her). Kelly is from Watchung, NJ (Somerset County) and will be living on campus. Olivia is from Hamilton, NJ (Mercer County) and will also be living on campus. 

Welcome to Rowan! Could you share with us one thing you are looking forward to in college? 

Kelly: The one thing I am most looking forward to is meeting new friends.

Olivia: At Rowan University, I’m looking forward to finding what I’m passionate about/exploring majors in the undecided program, meeting new people/making new friends, experiencing more freedom, and joining clubs.

What clubs, intramural sports, student activities, etc. are you most looking forward to at Rowan?

Kelly: I am most looking forward to playing on the Women’s Volleyball Team under Coach Deana Jespersen.

Olivia: I am looking forward to joining the Nutrition Club and Habitat for Humanity.

Kelly Hector smiling and wearing a Rowan University sweatshirt.
Kelly Hector (above)

Please share a few likes or interests that you have!

Kelly: I have a dog named Coconut — a Bichon Frise — and a hamster named OJ that I both adore. I also love athletics, especially volleyball. I’m artistic and enjoy painting, drawing and ceramics.

Olivia: In my free time I enjoy cooking and baking, watching new Netflix shows, spending time with friends and family, traveling, listening to music, reading, and taking walks either on the treadmill or outside when the weather is nice. 

Do you have advice for other high school seniors who haven’t committed to a school yet?

Kelly: Visit as many campuses as you can to get a feel for that college. I knew I wanted to go to Rowan as soon as I saw it.

Olivia: My advice to high school seniors would be to go with what your heart tells you to do. If you got accepted into a school that maybe your parents or friends are pressuring you to go to, but you know that college isn’t for you, go with your gut instinct. Choose the school that you will truly love and thrive in. The way I see it is that going with your heart is always the most beneficial decision for your future!

Olivia Szumloz smiling in a car.
Olivia Szumloz (above)

What is one thing about Rowan itself that you liked that encouraged you to enroll?

Kelly: The friendly environment!

Olivia: From the times I visited Rowan I noticed that there was so much diversity. I think it’s so much more beneficial when students are able to be exposed to so many different cultures in which they can learn so much from. In addition, it seemed as though everyone who attended Rowan was easy to talk to and extremely helpful when I had questions. I wasn’t intimidated, nor was I fearful of anyone and that is something I really value when finding the right college for me.

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Story by:
Skyla Everwine, English and writing arts major

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