1. What lessons from Haverford do you carry with you?
Haverford taught me how to be a better version of myself. More than anything, what I take away from Haverford is the importance of showing up and being present. Haverford drives you to do what gets you excited, whether that's engineering or English or art. The School also has a really strong community – I stay in touch with my friends, teachers and coaches.
2. Can you talk about winning the Gettysburg Entrepreneurial Fellowship?
My dad (Bob Burch '72) was an entrepreneur – he started his apparel company, Eagle Eye, at the age of 16. I inherited his entrepreneurial spirit and started Blue Truck when I was 16, doing handyman fixes and moving furniture. I grew the business every year during the summers. In my senior year at Gettysburg, I entered their Summer Entrepreneurial Fellowship competition and presented my business plan for Blue Truck. Winning that grant was one of my biggest accomplishments. It allowed me to meet some wonderful mentors as well as to operationalize my business. I am now an active member of the Fellowship and one of the alumni who will sit on the panel to judge future applicants. I think it's important to learn how to sell and present your ideas. The panel is full of young alumni like me who want to help this fellowship program take flight.
You're surrounded by people who want you to do well and succeed, so do your best and take advantage of everything Haverford has to offer. You don't have to do everything but whatever you do, do it with purpose, and seek help if you need it.
3. Your father Bob Burch '72, started the Big Timber Arts Roundup. What do you think the students take away from that trip to Montana?
I grew up in Montana and gained a real set of values there. You learn to work until the job's done, not just at 5 p.m. The jobs on a cattle ranch include irrigating fields, cutting hay, fixing fence, moving cattle – whatever is needed to help everything run smoothly. My dad started the trip so kids could see how a real ranch is run, and that it's an admirable profession. Kids in Montana don't know too much about life in the big cities, just like kids in the Northeast don't know too much about life in the country. I think the point is to get them working together, sharing experiences, and understanding each other.
4. How do you think students can make the most of their Haverford education?
Be present. You're surrounded by people who want you to do well and succeed, so do your best and take advantage of everything Haverford has to offer. You don't have to do everything but whatever you do, do it with purpose, and seek help if you need it. You will take Haverford with you – don't be afraid to graduate and move on, because all those lessons you learned will continue to make an impact for the rest of your life.
- The Big Room Blog