Three fall graduates explore their next steps

Three fall graduates explore their next steps

Every year, a handful of King’s students graduate in the fall. All are welcome (and encouraged!) to return for the fanfare of spring’s Encaenia celebrations, but until the time when we can welcome them back to the Quad, we’re highlighting three fall 2022 grads as they explore their next steps.  

Madison Matthews, geology grad, standing on seaside cliff in hiking gearMadison Matthews (she/her) fell in love with King’s when she came to tour the campus – in the month of November. “That’s saying something,” she laughs. Raised and educated in Raleigh, North Carolina, Matthews was born in Canada and has family roots in Nova Scotia. She came to King’s intending to do the Foundation Year Program only to veer quickly towards science. “I’d always loved the sciences,” she explains. “I enrolled in first year geology and I was hooked.” The King’s community, however, became core to her university life. “I was surrounded by FYP kids who were so passionate about what they were doing. I came from a huge high school, and it was important to me to have a small, close-knit place to live. King’s was the perfect base and the perfect jumping-off point.” 

Matthews loved the city and the province. “Geology meant field trips—lots of field trips,” she says. “Nova Scotia is a great playground for geologists. And I will miss outdoor adventures with friends, Blomidon, Cape Split, Christmas tree cutting in Lunenberg. I loved the Halifax waterfront and Point Pleasant Park.” 

“I’ve always known I want to teach,” Matthews affirms. She majored in earth sciences and history and took science education and science leadership courses along the way, becoming a teaching assistant in her third year. “I loved it. I loved boiling things down to simpler concepts and seeing them have ‘lightbulb’ moments.” At time of writing Matthews is back in North Carolina doing an MA in Teaching at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. “King’s and Dalhousie prepared me so well for a program that values experiential education and writing,” she says. “I learned how to write, problem solve and work in groups incredibly well.”


Khalil Tuff sitting in sun at picnic table with trees in background

Khalil Tuff (he/him) is currently taking a gap year but not without some clear intentions. After his fall graduation Tuff moved from Halifax to Montreal where, at time of writing, he is working at a café and beefing up his French. “I wanted a change that would be a merging of worlds,” he explains. “I wanted a bit of a culture shock without being too far from home.” Time and again he describes his life choices as getting out of his comfort zone. Raised in Victoria, he went about as far as you can go in Canada by moving to Halifax and choosing King’s with its warm, close community, to throw him into the middle of things. And he’s checking off the boxes: a work visa already in place towards a year in Australia, a country to which he’s always felt a strong pull. Tuff had hoped to spend a year at the University of Melbourne during his undergrad, one of many student plans laid waste by the pandemic. 

While King’s brought him community, Foundation Year brought Tuff intellectual rigor. After a start in journalism, he turned towards anthropology, sociology and international studies. While at King’s, he became a very familiar face both on and off campus; he filmed promotional content, including TikTok and YouTube videos, on a day in the life of a King’s student and tours of campus and the city.  “I loved the culture of talk…people talking to each other about everything,” he says about King’s. He credits the University for teaching him about community. “Life at King’s gave me a framework for how I want to shape my social network and community going forward,” he explains. “And King’s taught me how to feel comfortable exploring my own individuality.” Graduate school, Tuff says, is certain, though what he will study is not quite clear yet. “I need time to figure out exactly what I will do and how I’m going to use what I’ve learned, and that’s ok. I’m in the chapter of my life where I can learn more about myself, and test myself.” 


Hermione Davis leaning left shoulder on large stone wall with green lawn in backgroundNew graduates are often reluctant to take time to sort out their next steps; there’s often a self-imposed pressure to get moving. Fall graduate Hermione Davis (she/her) is, however, taking that time, though she certainly isn’t standing still. A native of Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia, Davis, who began acting at thirteen, did King’s Foundation Year Program augmented with her first acting class at Dalhousie’s Fountain School of Performing Arts. Some ‘day students’ (students who live off campus) find it challenging to find their place in a small, tightknit community but, characteristically, Davis tackled it. She became a part of the day student society in her first and second years, bonding closely with her fellow King’s students. And, of course, she acted in Classics in the Quad’s production of The Trojan Women.

Davis, who did a BA Honours in Theatre with a focus on acting, says the Foundation Year Program was the perfect starting point. “I always knew I was going to act but I wanted to read more. We studied some of the great plays, plays that would be referenced throughout my theatre studies. FYP helped me develop life skills like time management, organization and concise and meaningful writing,” she says. Now that she’s graduated, Davis, a multi-disciplinary artist, is slowing down just enough to have time to access what she wants to create and determine what kind of projects interest and motivate her.  

In addition to being an actor, Davis is a singer-songwriter and music is a strong focus. “I write songs every day and I’m learning how to produce,” Davis explains. As for genre, she describes her work as folk-pop with a little country fusion (you might want to give her song Strawberry Jam on Spotify a listen). Interested in new forms, she’s writing an interactive, fourth wall-breaking play that invites the audience to participate in music making. “I want to bridge the gap between music and theatre. There is so much to explore there.”

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