Deceased March 6, 2014
Nicole Scott—educator, writer and dear friend—died March 6 from complications of influenza.
One of Nikki’s gifts was maintaining a wealth of genuine friendships, illustrated vividly at her wake, when many of her eulogists warmly claimed her as their “best friend.” All those whose lives she touched continue to mourn this great loss.
Nikki lived her life as if it were itself a work of art. She possessed a rigorous work ethic and was dedicated to her profession, but also enjoyed a personal life filled with friends, family, cooking, travel, dancing, athletics and simple relaxation. She loved to laugh and had a genius for bringing out laughter in others.
Nikki’s true passion was education. She excelled at her work in New York City schools, first as a classroom teacher, then as an administrator, ultimately serving as senior director of new schools within the New York City Department of Education. Thousands of children continue to benefit from her talent and tireless work in opening new public schools and grooming school leadership.
At Amherst Nikki studied widely, including courses in the sciences, English literature and creative writing. She played rugby, sang with the Sabrinas and lived in the Spanish house. Continuing her connection to Amherst post-graduation, she served as a Wade Fellow from 2008 to 2011, visiting the campus annually to speak to students about her experiences as a black alumna.
An avid traveler and talented linguist, Nikki was fluent in Spanish and German. In recent years she lived for a time in Berlin before returning home to New York City. She continued to write, anticipating a second career for herself in the future. One of the tragedies of her passing is that we are all robbed of the art and laughter she would have continued to produce throughout her life.
Cecily (Channell) Kaz ’97
Jonathan Pappas ’97
Fran Ganz-Lord ’95