Krista Goebel '18

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Hi! My name is Krista. I am from just outside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and my perfect free day involves cozying up on my Megabed (two beds pushed together because I have a double all to myself!) with some friends with a cup of iced or hot coffee, depending on the season, and watching movies (preferably rom coms, but most movies will do) and chit chatting away. I also love to draw and paint, to sing and play flute, and to hang out with children to hear the adorable things they have to say. 

Here at Amherst, I am a Psychology Major and the flute section leader in the Amherst Symphony Orchestra, co-director of the Amherst College Sabrinas (one of two all-female a cappella choruses), and co-president of Amherst College Newman Club (the Catholic community on campus). I do research in the Communication and Social Interaction Psychology Lab, and I enjoy rock climbing with the Outing Club, playing intramural volleyball in the spring, and singing at a local nursing home with Whistle a Happy Tune. In addition, I am a tour guide for the Admissions Office and a reading mentor for Reader to Reader, Inc.: two awesome jobs that all Amherst students can apply for! A random fun fact about me: In eighth grade, I hit a bunt in softball that ended up being a home run (email me for more details-- it was the most exciting moment of my softball career).

Please email me at with any comments or questions. I love talking about my amazing school!

Krista's Blog Entries

Carnival, Valentine's Day, and Free Stuff to Combat the Cold

Hello, All!

Winter is in full swing at Amherst! We don't have that much snow (though we are expecting some more today! We're getting flurries as we speak!) but we've got temperatures dropping to the low negative teens. It's times like these when living off campus is not so appealing... However, I love seeing everyone so bundled up trudging through the cold together. Coldness is definitely a unifying force!

This past Tuesday, Amherst hosted its annual winter carnival. Last year, the winter carnival was canceled due to too much snow.... yes, this does sound pretty silly-- winter carnival canceled due to winter. It inspired an Amherst Muck-Rake post, found here:

This year, students were informed of the carnival a mere one or two days before the event to ensure that there was not a repeat of last year. Winter Carnival did indeed take place, and students enjoyed desserts, hot chocolate, good company, ice sculptures of various animals, fire dancers, S'more making, and an amazing bonfire. Here is a picture of my friend Anna, my roommate Kyla, and me (respectively, left to right) at winter carnival after making S'mores.

Friends in the snow

This past weekend was Valentine's Day Weekend, and I do mean weekend: Amherst celebrated Valentine's Day on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. All weekend, there were fun Valentine's Day-themed games and parties, fun food, fun things to do in town, decorations everywhere. Lots of students left cheery Valentine's notes in each other's mailboxes. The all-time highlight of Amherst's Valentine's Day show though (I'm not biased or anything..) is the annual Sabrinas A Cappella Valentine's Day Show! The show was so much fun and can be found online..

Sabrinas A Cappella Group smiling before their Valentine's Day Show  

Us before our show! (I'm fourth from the right)

Going back to the cold weather, I would also like to point out that on Friday of last week, on one of the days that were bitterly cold, Amherst was one of the happiest places ever. Everywhere I turned, I was being offered free stuff. By the end of the day, I had been given a free T-shirt, root beer float, cupcake with paper compliments, and silly putty. I think free stuff is a wonderful way to combat cold weather, don't you? 

3/4 Point

Hi, Readers!

Happy (almost) spring! Today's post is going to be a sort of hodgepodge of events and information, yay! I am 3/4 of the way through the year (half way through the second semester), and I can't believe it--Where has the time gone? As I type, I am back home on spring break, which lasts until this Sunday (the real first day of spring). It started Saturday, so it's just a week--the perfect amount of time for a spring break, in my opinion. I feel so comfortable, warm, and at home right now, but I want to point out that I get these same feelings in my room in Plimpton House, my dorm on campus. 

Personally, I like to try my best to finish all of my homework (typically in Frost Library) before I go back to my room. That way, my room has a feeling of relaxation every time I enter. In my room, I have artwork hung up on all of my walls (Amherst has no problem with students using tape or tacks on the walls!), two goldfish swimming in my fish tank (their names are Allen and Wilson... email me for details and/or pictures. They're pretty cute), and my wonderful roommate, Kyla, who does wonderful things like surprise me with beautiful, delicious mini apple pies that she has made (pictured below). If I have time, I like to watch movies or shows in my room. Below is a picture of my friend Madeline and I finishing up the series finale of Downton Abbey. All of these things contribute to me feeling so at home in my room.

Krista and best friend Madeline watching Downton Abbey in dorm room


Homemade apple pie made by my roomie, Kyla













In other news, I recently started working in a Psychology lab as a research assistant! In all honesty, I always used to hear other students say, "I've done this research, that research, etc.," and I never thought I would ever do research. The word "research" has always sounded intimidating to me. But here I am doing it and loving it! I am doing research, and you can too if you come here and want to! Anytime professors need help with research they are conducting, they come straight to us undergrads, since there are no grad students. Yay Amherst!

Here is a picture of me being spotted on my first day.

Me walking to the lab on my first day working there

More exciting news!!

Intramural volleyball has been taking place over the past few weeks, along with the other two early-spring intramural sports (basketball and dodge ball). I've never been to any other IM sports games, but I can tell you for sure that IM volleyball is a blast! Everyone is welcome to come play intramurals, whether or not you have registered. You can go to as many games as you would like. It's low pressure and relatively low-skill but still gets competitive--the perfect combination for me. who hasn't played volleyball since 8th grade but loves some good competition.

My team is called the Itsy Bitsy Spikers, and we have an amazing group of great, supportive people from all over campus. Some of us know each other well and some of us only know each other through volleyball, but we make an amazing IM team and are doing pretty well..... we have a slight chance at winning the championship next week, but don't get your hopes up too high. I'll keep you posted!

My friend Elliot playing volleyball My teammate Elliot

Happy First Day of Classes!

Hi, Readers!

Today marks the beginning of Semester 2; interterm is over, and students are finally all back on campus!

You can always tell when it is the first day of classes because...

1. Breakfast is packed! Everyone wants to start off the semester on the right foot by going to Val early in the morning and having a hearty breakfast. As the semester progresses, Val always gets less and less crowded at breakfast time. 

2. Classes are packed! It's always Add/Drop period for the first two weeks of school, meaning that students are free to check out and sit in on any class they are interested in, as many as they would like to try and fit into their day. After the two weeks, they choose and register for their four (sometimes five if students petition) classes for the semester. 

3. Students arrive to class earlier than usual. For a typical Amherst class, there are a few students who arrive about 10 minutes early, a vast majority who arrive slightly early or right on time, and a few straggllers who are late. During Add/Drop period, students arrive early because 1) they want to get good seats in the crowded classrooms and 2) because they want to make good impressions on the professors, who have the power to drop students from a class if it is overenrolled.

Drop students?!

Yes, sadly, as wonderful as it is that students are able to take as many classes as they wish during Add/Drop period, it is also true that Add/Drop period can be stressful because many classes have caps, and professors need to drop some students in order that they can have the desirable class size. Sometimes, professors give preference to students who preregistered for classes. Sometimes, to those majoring in the subject area, and sometimes to specific grades, such as sophomores. Other times, selection is random. Often, if you do not get into a class you tried to attend one semester, you are given priority whenever the class is offered next.

Some cool things to keep in mind:

1. Amherst offers half credit courses! Today, I attended a half-credit dance class called Modern/Ballet I. I'm not certain I will be taking it, but it was so cool to check it out! I'm also trying a really cool half-credit choral conducting class.

2. Add/Drop period is a really great time to go outside your comfort zone and try a class you never thought you'd take.

3. You can email me with any sorts of questions you have about Add/Drop period (it can be confusing!) or anything else. I'm always happy to talk talk talk :)


Hello, Readers!

Sorry for not posting for a while; I've been on break! I am back on campus now, working hard, and bursting with things to tell you!

During interterm (which, this year, is from January 4 through January 22), students are welcomed back to campus before school starts (on January 25th) either to practice and compete in a sport or to take an interterm class. This year, I decided to head back a couple weeks before classes start to take a non-credit course called Experiential Education Studies: Integrating liberal arts as a platform for innovative thought in education policy. Classes are open to all five-college students, and a comprehensive list can be found following this link:

This class has been a wonderful experience so far. Luckily, since enrollment in the class was not at full capacity, the facilitators of the class admitted my cousin Annelise (a freshman at Vassar College) to the class after she submitted her application. We've been having a great time!

Our class has nine students enrolled, and we are focusing on trying to come up with innovative solutions to different problems the education system faces in and surrounding the Amherst area. So far, we have visited all sorts of different schools in the Amherst, Holyoke, Springfield, and Greenfield districts and met with principals and teachers hoping to come to grips with what has been working and what has not. We have been holding "shark tank" type panel discussions where we students present different potential solutions to educational professionals this past week, and the result has been very fruitful discussions. The class culminates this Tuesday in a final presentation by the students to all of the panelists, our facilitators and, to my understanding, some students of our best idea for a full-service community school. So far, the experience has been tiring but totally worthwhile, and please email me if you are interested and would like to discuss this really unique experience further. 

It has been very nice being back on campus without having all the responsibilities of the school year. Though my interterm class is demanding, I still have time for lots of fun activities that I do not normally get to do during the year. I just hope my cousin Annelise doesn't think Amherst is quite like this all the time..... :) 

This week, Annelise and I went rock climbing and roller skating/laser tagging at the Hampshire Mall. We both tried out Zumba for the first time, we took a shopping trip to Northampton, and we've had countless wonderful, long discussions in Val (our one-and-only lovable dining hall). We've really made use of a lot of the fun things there are to do at and around Amherst. We're exhausted but having a blast, and I can't wait to see what week two of interterm has in store for us!


Insights and Ideas from our Experiential Education Studies class


Here's Annelise!


I didn't quite make it to the top


Annelise enjoying some froyo (I had a gift card)

Living on the Hill

Hello, All! Happy December!

The weather is getting colder in Amherst... Coats are getting puffier and puffier, hanging out outside is becoming less and less appealing, and students are even starting to break out their ugly Christmas sweaters. Christmas lights are starting to light up town. I had the good luck of randomly walking through town right during their Christmas tree lighting, and it was wonderful to see such a great number of people assembled to see the beatiful tree and enjoy horse carriage rides, Christmas caroling, hot chocolate, good company, and free elf hats. 


Amherst Christmas tree lighting in town

Now that the weather is cold, which dorm students live in on campus is pretty significant. First-years have it quite nice:  They are all located in the center of campus on the first-year quad. To get to Val, they brace themselves for the cold for a mere two minutes. To get to class, they walk tops about five minutes. Seniors, juniors, and even some sophomores also have it pretty nice and are close to main campus. I, however, live "on the hill," the furthest away housing. Compared to campuses of other schools, my commute may seem very short, but when the weather is cold and others can run home to their rooms and warm up within a few minutes, my 15-minute-or-so walk home seems pretty rough.

Here is how upper classman housing works. If a student does not apply and get chosen to live in themed housing (here is the link for the full list of theme houses, which include the arts house, different language houses, the health & wellness quarter, etc.:, or apply and get hired as a Resident Counselor (job description here:, then students choose groups of 2-8 people or enter alone into a room draw. These groups are given random lottery numbers and ranked by number (with seniors at the top, then juniors, and then sophomores). Those at the top get to select where they want to live first, and then it moves down the list until all of the sophomores have chosen. The process is pretty staight forward, but there is one way to move up in the ranking system that is pretty unique to Amherst.

Room draw groups are given the opportunity to enter a lip sync competition to raise their standing. Groups make a CD and come up with silent skits during which they mouth the words to different songs. The winning group with the best skit for each class year moves up to first place on the ranking list for their class. The turnout for the lip sync show is impeccable because the show is absolutely hilarious and thoroughly entertaining. . Here are some videos I have found of the show in past years to give you an idea:

Students go all out in their skits. It is definitely worth your time to take a look! I have my fingers crossed that next year I will have a higher standing in the room draw and get to live closer to main campus. Or, maybe I will apply to be an RC, or maybe I will choose to study abroad... I have lots of upcoming decisions to make! For now, I am trying to make the most of my cold walks back home every day. :)

Thanksgiving at Home and Fun Things to Do Around Amherst

This is my ninth day home on Thanksgiving break, and I am quite comfortable here, cozied up on my couch sipping coffee and reading through my blogs that I have posted thusfar. I just figured out how to make all of my pictures larger, which is pretty exciting. Quite apparently, I am no technology whiz. 

It's been nice being home-- I have caught up with many of my high school friends, spent lots of quality time with my family, and have eaten sooooo much turkey and stuffing among other delicious home-cooked meals, but not even being so close to the exciting city of Philadelphia can measure up to being in the town of Amherst. (However, there are lots of fun things to do in Philly, don't get me wrong. Email me for ideas and suggestions if you are visiting or are simply curious!)

Apart from the many exciting activities, events, and fun opportunities open to Amherst students inside campus, there is lots to do just outside. Firstly, we have free bussing to all of the five colleges and nearby towns such as Northampton (my a cappella group has gone to Northampton for the past two years to Christmas carol!). In fact, I've heard that we have the largest free bussing system (PVTA) in the country! Visiting the other campuses, either because you are taking a class there or just for fun, is a great way to get a change of scenery. Walking or biking to the other five colleges is also very doable and a great way to get exercise. Last week, the weather was so nice that I ended up walking to UMass, which is only about a 20-minute walk away. 



Sights from UMass

At the Hampshire Mall (25-ish minute bus ride), there is laser tagging and roller skating (only $2 on Tuesdays!) as well as shopping galore. If you are missing your pet, you can take a quick 25-minute-or-so bus ride into Hadley to visit all of the cats, guinea pigs, birds, fish, etc. at PetSmart. There is even a day when dogs that are up for adoption come (I believe Saturdays). My roommate and I have gone to PetSmart on multiple occassions to pick out fish. Another plus-side to coming to Amherst-- you are allowed to have fish!


Kyla (my roommate) and I at the bus stop with our two new goldfish!

It takes a mere five minutes to walk into town, and in Amherst there are all sorts of fun food options. LimeRed is a popular place for bubble tea, Glazed for donuts, Antonio's for pizza ($1 slices on Fridays at midgnight!). There are Chinese, Italian, and Mexican food restraurants, as well as art galleries and other cute shops. I have always wanted to take a painting class at Judie's Art Bar...  I'll have to keep you posted on how it is!

Here are more lists of fun things to do around Amherst:

Poking around more, I found another list exclusively consisting of fun things to do at Amherst during the summer:

From touring the Emily Dickinson Museum to getting ice cream at Flayvors while seeing all of the cows and chickens, the options are endless. Thinking about how wonderful the area is is making me so excited to get back to Amherst tomorrow.... :)

When Things Get Tough

This week started off pretty dismally. It was rainy and cold most days, and it has been getting so dark so early. It's crunch time right now at Amherst-- lots of deadlines for papers and projects are understandably set right before Thanksgiving break. It is also a popular time for midterms, and with an environment of 1800 students all feeling these similar stresses, things were getting pretty intense.

In the beginning of the week when I was feeling down, to stay postive I looked for the good in the bad. It was dark and rainy, but people were wearing bright, happy raincoats with matching boots and/or umbrellas. The reflections on the roads were beautiful, and the bright red berry bushes looked all the more beatuiful next to the stripped trees and bare surroundings. 


Bright bushes I always pass walking toward the Admissions Office

When I found myself upset that it was getting dark around 4:30 PM, I tried to really look at the darkness and at how beautiful all of the lights look in the dark. On clear nights, you can see a good number of stars from campus.


My view when I walk home to Plimpton House every night

In the beginning of the week, it was not too hard to keep myself feeling optimistic, despite the stressful working atmosphere and gloomy weather. But it is important to know that there are many resources for students when different pressures become too much. Students can always make appointments at our counseling center, Every dorm has at least one Resident Counselor (RC) who is always there to listen and offer guidance and support. Student Health Educators educate students about mental health issues, body image/eating disorders, etc. as well as general health. Spiritual advisors, coaches, and professors also act as support systems and guidance figures. Students are certainly cared for and supported on this campus.

Toward the end of the week, on Thursday, November 12th, #AmherstUprising began. It started as a 1-hour, sit-in starting at 1 PM involving about 30 students who wanted to sit in solidarity with the students of color at Missouri University and Yale University. Then, the number of students participating grew, and 2 PM came and the students never left. Students of different races offered their stories concerning their experiences of racial injustice on and off campus for everyone to listen to and to learn from. Ashley Montgomery, another student blogger, has already written a wonderful blog post on the subject, so I will try my best not to repeat too much of the information she has already provided. Here is her post for reference: 

By Thursday night, 2/3 of the student body sat, united, in Frost Library, all hoping that this radical act of compassion would effect change on our campus, allowing everyone to feel the same inclusivity, love, and acceptance. 


A photo I took Thursday night at Frost Library

Campus has been extremely emotional these past few days. Heartwrenching stories have been shared and so many tears have been shed, but the huge amount of participation in the sit-in and all of the active listening by students has been truly encouraging. It is important to keep in mind that at Amherst, students have safe spaces to speak their minds and to have what they are saying heard by administrators, faculty, and the rest of the studeny body. It is also important to know that students here are active supporters of social justice and active supporters of one another.

Two sentences I heard over and over again in the past few days were, "Come to Frost to speak and to listen to what your peers have to say," and "Don't forget to practice self care." The whole campus feels the pain that has been expressed, and everyone has truly been looking out for one another. 

Frost Library and a Fun Psych Experiment

Frost Library, affectionately named after Robert Frost (who taught at Amherst for over 40 years!), is our main academic library here on campus. We have two other, special-subject libraries on campus (the Vincent Morgan Music Library and the Keefe Science Library), but Frost is my favorite.

There are 6 floors to Frost, each with its own personality.

The first floor (the ground level floor) is a conversational floor. There is a cafe area to sit and eat and chat in-- perfect for interview/tutoring sessions. There are also large tables for study groups and a really great comfy chair and couch area (perfect for studying or napping).  The first floor has a nice buzz to it-- if you do not like absolute silence, this is a nice floor to study on.

The second floor is somewhat of a mystery to me. It was being renovated all last year, and I haven't ventured up there too many times this year. It is supposed to be a collaboritive floor, where conversation is also welcome, but the few times I have been up there, it has been very quiet. 

Third Floor Frost (TFF) is my favorite. It has big windows that make it well lit and is almost always quiet. For me, time magically stands still on TFF, and I get so much work finished. 

A-level Frost has computers and printers and is pretty quiet usually, and B-level and C-level quiet, underground levels that I never really venture down into.... I find them a little creepy. 

Last week, I decided to run a psych experiment in Frost. For my Social Psychology class, I had to break a social norm and write a paper about the experience. I decided to break the proximity norm by sitting much closer to people in Frost than I normally would. You see, when there are empty tables available in Frost, there is an unspoken rule that you will fill the empty tables before you join another person, especially a stranger at a table. To break this norm, I either asked to sit right next to people who were on the comfy couches/chairs on the first floor or people who were studying queitly on the third floor. I was trying to see if people thought it was less weird that I sat with them if the library was busy and noisy than when it was fairly empty.

The reactions people had were pretty funny. They kept discretley looking around to see if the library was fuller than they thought, and some slowly inched away from me little by little. When I revealed to my participants that I was performing a social psych experiment, most of them were relieved. Some, however, were slightly disappointed that it was only an experiment. Two of my participants who were sitting together were so excited to be approached by a stranger in Frost. They said that it was very atypical but refreshing and that they thought people should do it more often. 

Their reactions really hit home with me. As a sophomore, I have already established my main friend group, and though I love to talk to new people, a reminder to go out of my way to engage in conversations with strangers was important. 

A Cappella and Halloween!

Hello, Everyone! Happy November!

Halloween---- candy! Ghosts.. vampires, costumes, haunted houses.... pumpkins, cider, trick-or-treating, corn mazes... candy, candy, candy! Halloween is associated with lots of different fun things for different people (most importantly, lots of free candy). For the Amherst College Sabrinas and Route 9 a cappella groups, it also meant preparing for a really fun concert that took place on Friday, the night before Halloween. 

Amherst College is affectionately called the "Singing College" because there are so many ways for students to become involved with singing. There are four vocal ensembles subsidized by the Music Department, which are the Glee Club (all-male), Women's Chorus (all-female), the Madrigal Singers (co-ed, student run group) and the Concert Choir (co-ed). There are also six a cappella groups on campus-- the Sabrinas and Bluestockings (all-female), Route 9 and The Zumbyes (all male), DQ (co-ed and secular), and Terras Irradient (co-ed and Christian). On Friday, the Sabrinas and Route 9 joined together to perform a killer Halloween Show, in costume.

We sang two joint songs with both groups together and then two Sabrinas songs with a Route 9 solosit and 2 Route 9 songs with a Sabrina solosit. The turnout for the show was incredible. Here is our poster for the show, taken by the amazing Peter Connolly:


(I am the king spotted in the middle of the bottom row)

What was so great about this concert was that the two a cappella groups got to spend so much time getting to know each other. We started off our first joint rehearsal with an icebreaker game, spent all week rehearsing together, "tabled" together during lunch and dinner to hype everyone up for the show (meaning we showed everyone this poster and encouraged them to come to our show as the walked into Val), performed together, and, finally, celebrated a wonderful performance together. As one of the directors of the Sabrinas, I am in total support of a cappella bonding. Hopefully there will be more joint concerts in the near future!

For me personally, it was a very musical Halloween. The morning after the performance (the morning of Halloween) I left Amherst at 10 AM for New York City with the Amherst Symphony Orchestra to perform a concert at Symphony Space in Manhattan. We played Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique and Dukas' Sorcerer's Apprentice from Fantasia. 

IMG_3975.JPG IMG_3978.JPG

            Look who is featured!                                Flute section performing at Symphony Space  

It was a really great bonding experience for the orchestra, waking up early on Saturday and taking the bus 2.5 hours to New York City. We had a tight schedule-- dress rehearsal, followed by a pizza dinner, followed by check-in at Hostelling International, then our 7:30 PM concert. Today, we were free to explore the city some. Currently, I am blogging from a library in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Greetings from NYC!

I am really looking forward to going back to Amherst later tonight and hearing what Halloween was like for all of my friends who were on campus. 

More later!



Hi, readers!

Would you like to know one of the best aspects of Amherst College? Its enrollment number: approximately 1,800 undergraduate students. The number is small compared to most colleges but is exactly what I was looking for. I came from a small high school near Philadelphia with only about 150 students per class and about 600 students total. Amherst was the perfect "size-up."

I really love that I go to a school where I can attend a jazz concert and know half of the ensemble, even though I am not directly involved with jazz, or go to any sporting event and have friends of mine to cheer on. I love that I can walk around campus and see so many friendly faces.

 The student body is large enough that I am able to meet new people every day yet small enough for countless perks, such as small class sizes (average size is 16!), close relationships with professors (student to faculty ratio is 8:1!), lots of available singles (students are virtually guaranteed singles their junior and senior years!) and …(drum roll, please) the fact that it lends itself to an activity my friend Madeline and I coined “spotting.”

Because Amherst is a small liberal arts college, you start to recognize a lot of faces very quickly after beginning your time here. A spot is a sort of nuanced term, and I think I will be able to explain it best by providing you with some quick examples. Our student improv group likes to eat dinner together on Sundays. Seeing them all eating together is a spot! I have a friend whose last name is Green, and green is his favorite color. Seeing him in a green shirt and green sneakers is a spot! From time to time, I see one guy around campus, and I always think to myself, “Wow, he looks a lot like my friend Zack.” Zack is on the Frisbee team, and once, I saw him and his doppelgänger throwing a frisbee with each other—such a great spot!

My roommate working the pasta station in Val (our dining hall)—spotted!

My friends who also work in the Admissions Office going by giving tours—spotted!

Orchestra friends practicing their instruments in the practice rooms with windows that I can peak into—spotted!

Friends making use of different nooks and couches to take naps—spotted!

Cute couples, babies, dogs—spotted!

The occasion blimp or hot air balloon that floats over campus--spotted!


The phenomenon of spotting is constantly expanding. Starting as an activity Madeline and I used to enjoy ourselves, spotting is now enjoyed by a great number of people. Every day, I receive Snapchats from friends with pictures all titled, “Spotted!” Just now, as I’ve been sitting here typing this post, Madeline Snapchatted me a picture of me, titled, “Spotted blogging about spotting.” Spotting is an Amherst lifestyle. Within a week of being here, I guarantee you’ll find some spots of your own.

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Two nice spots :)