Spartans for life

They have changed. Their hair has grayed or fallen out and their weight has shifted, but they remain at Castleton State College after all these years. Several Castleton alums either stay here after graduation to work or in some cases come back after several years away.

But why would they come back? Was it the fond memories or just where they felt comfortable?

According to Liz Garside 23 percent of Castleton employees are CSC college graduates. These include those who teach, coach, work part-time and full-time.

Dean of Students Dennis Proulx has come back twice. Two years after graduation he came back to work in admissions, but then left after three years to go to graduate school. Before returning, he worked at four other colleges. But when he came here for a conference and there was a job opening, he jumped on it – again.

“The environment here feels more comfortable,” Proulx said.

Tammy Lattuca feels similarly. She came here at the age of 36 as a non-traditional student and was in a first-year-seminar like the other freshmen, but she said she didn’t feel out of place among the 18 and 19 year olds.

“They made me feel at ease,” Lattuca said, adding that the experience made her realize what she wanted to do after school.

Lattuca said she realized right then that she wanted to work with the students. By the time she graduated, she had already been a student orientation staff leader and served in student government.

These experiences further cemented her desire to stay at Castleton and work with the students.

And it happened.

Her Student Services experience led her to be hired as program advisor, where she works with students and their clubs.

Admissions counselor Joe Zeitler never left Castleton. As a student, he was a tour guide for admissions and when he was getting ready to graduate he wanted a job like everyone else. On his graduation day in May 2008, while President Dave Wolk handed him a diploma and shook his hand, Wolk also told Zeitler he got the job. Zeitler said he has no intentions of moving away now because he just got married to a woman he met here and they just bought a house.

But some alums said they never thought they’d be back.

Communication professor David Blow never saw himself coming back after he graduated in 1989. After working as a journalist for about 15 years, he said he thought teaching would be “cool.” He needed a recommendation for graduate school and went to his former professor Bob Gershon. It was during that discussion that Gershon asked if he wanted to teach a journalism ethics course.

Since their college days, there have been changes to the campus and to their appearance, but these alums seem to have a universal love for Castleton.

“It is neat to be back where I got my start,” said Blow.

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