The Johnnie Chair Team

Gabriela Carroll ‘23

Hi there, my name is Gabriela Carroll and I’m a senior on the Annapolis campus. I’m from Austin, Texas so I started on the Santa Fe Campus to be close to home, but I transferred my junior year to try out the east coast! I knew I was going to love St. John’s as soon as I found out about it. After I went to Summer Academy in high school I was completely sold.

Aside from schoolwork, I’m usually playing soccer, watching movies, or reading for pleasure. Some of the program authors I’m particularly fond of are Shakespeare, Austen, Plato and Kierkegaard. When it comes to off program reading, I love Cixin Liu, Clarice Lispector, and Simone Weil. 

St. John’s has really altered the way I interact with what I read and my thinking as a whole. I feel way more involved in my education then I’ve ever felt before and I’m so happy to have ended up at St. John’s.

Helen Felbek, ‘25

Hello there! My name is Helen Felbek (Annapolis, Class of 2025) and I am an international student from Germany. My first contact with St. John’s was during the Summer Seminars that were first held back in 2020. Being able to engage in meaningful conversations on books I love with people across the Atlantic from the comfort of my bedroom (amidst a pandemic!) was eye-opening and convinced me to apply to St. John’s! Within the community, I am on the Waltz Committee and sing in the St. John’s Chorus. I am also a regular participant in our intramural program (Go Greenwaves!) and a delegate on the Delegate Council, our student government. 

My passions include (unsurprisingly) reading, visual art, and political science. I love engaging in conversations, especially on long walks exploring the neighborhoods of Annapolis. My favorite book on the reading list (so far) is Joe Sack’s translation of Aristotle’s Metaphysics. I am incredibly grateful for being able to receive a liberal arts education at St. John’s. What I love about this place is obviously the books, but mostly that the conversation never stops! 

Lirian Spolaore ‘23

Hello everyone! My name is Lirian Selene Spolaore and I am a senior at the Annapolis campus of St. John’s College. I am an international student at heart because I was born in the Dominican Republic, grew up in Italy, and moved to the States just in time to discover St. John’s! Once I received a copy of the Iliad and saw its wonderful campus, I fell in love with St. John’s right away. The classes always spark my curiosity and reignite my passion for learning. I would not trade it for anything – especially because the connections made here make it ten times more worthwhile.

If you ever come to Annapolis, you will probably see me around. I try my best to be as active as I can on campus. I am the archon (leader) of the Waltz Committee, I give tours to prospective students, and I also love singing. As a result, when there is a chance for me to jump on stage, I will take it. Aside from this, I also enjoy learning languages – I am currently learning Korean – editing videos and, at times, painting, just for the sake of it.

I am really grateful for everything that St. John’s has given me, and I am very curious as to what awaits in my future after this wonderful chapter in my life.

Tessa Wild ‘23

Hey! My name is Tessa Wild, and I’m a current senior on the Annapolis campus. I chose St. John’s right when I toured, so if you want to become a Johnnie, make sure you take full advantage of our amazing prospective student program! St. John’s is a college unlike any other.

I spent my junior year on our sister campus in Santa Fe, NM, and love to talk about the similarities and differences between both campuses. In Santa Fe, I was the archon (leader) of the Sustainable Crafting Club, and I love to sew, crochet, and cook. Now, I work at the Annapolis admissions office! My favorite book on the program is the very first one – the Iliad.

St. John’s has been a whirlwind of incredible experiences which I would not trade for anything. The college has connected me with the world, with the past, and with the great books of the western canon in a manner which has permanently altered my life. I love to talk about St. John’s, so if you have any questions, I’m always available for Johnnies, be they prospective, current, or alumni!