During the summer before his senior year of high school, Ari Kornelis attended Alma College’s summer percussion workshop.
“I thought I knew a lot about music, but hearing the percussions ensemble perform for us — because they do a concert during that camp each week — and when they performed, I was pretty blown away,” says Ari, who graduated from Alma in 2014.
Alma wasn’t initially on the top of his college list. But as time went on, the idea of going to a large university just didn’t feel right to him. Alma did.
“An exciting thing about the opportunities at Alma College is that you can really get exposed to a lot of different things, and you’re not sort of stuck within your major,” he says.
Alma’s small-school experience allowed him to be involved in a wide range of activities. He performed in the orchestra, concert band, percussion ensemble and Kiltie Marching Band.
Kornelis became the president of the Alma College chapter of the International Criminal Court Student Network. He traveled to the Netherlands to participate in a conference on international law regarding the case of Thomas Lubanga Dyilo, a war criminal from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
He also became involved with WQAC, Alma’s student radio station, and the Model United Nations team.
Kornelis studied abroad in the Peruvian Amazon doing work with sustainable waste management systems like vermicomposting — composting with worms. That has led to an interest in environmental policy, which he plans to pursue after graduation.