Senior Spotlight: Ellon Madill ’22 Attributes SMC Success to Teamwork

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Ellon Madill is graduating with a BA in Communication and a minor in Digital Studies, and has earned the Byron Brant Award for her outstanding scholastic records as a Communication major. At SMC, she was a WOWie, an executive of Women’s Club Lacrosse, a founding member of the Fishing Club, a tutor, a KSMC 89.5FM DJ, and an Athletics production assistant. We asked her to share her experiences at Saint Mary’s.

How did you feel when you learned about winning the Byron Brant Award?

I was elated, honored, and brutally made aware that my time at SMC was drawing to a close! Receiving the award sent me into a full-blown state of reflection; I reflected on my earliest to my latest Communication courses, projects, and research papers (Woah, how far we’ve come!), but more so on the people that I’ve met and worked with along the way. They have undoubtedly been the most impactful in shaping my academic experience here.  

Tell us about a class or activity that was special for you. What was it and how did it change you?

Where to begin! Well, while I have many memories that come to mind, I have to shout out Gael Vision and my time as a production assistant for the Athletics Department. I began working on the Gael Vision team in my first-year, streaming all of our D1 men’s and women’s sports games on campus. I loved being behind the camera, on the court or on the field; managing logistics of double-header days with my colleagues; directing or replaying shots of our Gaels’ greatest athletic achievements; and putting our loudest fans on the big screen! I learned that work can be fun and that great things—even seemingly impossible things—can be achieved with teamwork.

What brought you to SMC?

My “what” includes a “who”: my mom. No, seriously—she suggested on a whim one afternoon that we take a tour. If it weren’t for her driving me here that day, I would never have felt the strong sense of belonging that I experienced when we pulled into campus and when I took my first step onto the grounds. I am a firm believer in divine intervention, and it was one of those moments for me. 

What has surprised you most about your studies at SMC over the years?

I was encouraged to push myself outside of my academic comfort zone and was often pleasantly surprised with the results when I did. There were times where I could have sat in the back of the classroom instead of the front, not shown up for optional office hours, not followed up with an internship opportunity, or opted out of submitting a paper to a conference. But in doing the opposite, I experienced immense personal growth and expanded my professional horizons. I have my professors and peers at SMC to thank for sharing their wealth of resources and for having confidence in me when I least did. 

Where are you headed next?

I am excited to announce that I have begun working as a legislative aide for Full Moon Strategies, a lobbying and consulting firm based in Alameda, CA. I look forward to exploring the world of public policy and to wherever my degree and divine intervention will take me next!

Saint Mary’s congratulates Ellon Madill and looks forward to her future successes.