I met with Melody Mackowiak ’06 in her apartment in the D.C. area. Before I arrived, she texted me and said that she’d be outside waiting, and easy to spot because she’d be wearing her Antioch College Bootcamp For The Revolution t-shirt, and she was not lying. We had a really engaging conversation about the college’s closing and the amazing culture that she lived in while she was at Antioch.
Antioch opened so many doors for me, there’s nothing negative I can say about it. When I go back, I feel like I’m in my little utopia. It’s like this special place that only those of us who went know. I mean I have goosebumps talking about it. It will always hold a special place in my heart. I will never forget the experiences that I had there, and the growth, and the hard times. You had to push through those hard times to make it. I was student there when the KKK came and it was frightening, but it was one of those experiences that, as a campus, we came together and literally protected and supported each other. And then GenderFuck—I had no idea that people could be that open with who they were, and I discovered who I was on so many levels through Antioch parties. I learned how to party at Antioch, and more than that, I learned how to keep myself safe. There’s no way that I could have lived in this part of the country for the last seven years if not for having the experiences I had at Antioch. I learned how to weather any storm. You know, co-op really helped me to learn how to budget and how to make a dollar last. I am not scared to move anywhere with nothing. I moved to the East coast with $200 to my name. At least my Antioch, the place that I remember, is a place that you could be who you were and you were safe and you were protected, and people either accepted it, or they didn’t, but they respected it. And that’s what I’ll hold in my heart.