Class of 2017: Meet Chloe Forsell, a French Enthusiast and Researcher

Chloe Forsell '17

Meet members of Geneseo's Class of 2017, who exemplify the college’s commitment to community, innovation, creativity, sustainability, and excellence. Student writers are highlighting our newest alumni and the contributions they have made, the calling they have found and discoveries made along the way. Hear what Geneseo means to her and her favorite Geneseo memory.

As an English and French double major, senior Chloe Forsell has made the most of her time at Geneseo.

As a recipient of the Joanna Kirk One World Endowed Scholarship for Semester-Long or Year-Long Study and the Dr. Gerald R. Gouvernet Memorial Endowed Ambassadorship in French Language and Culture, Chloe was able to spend a semester abroad in France.

Her original goal had been to conduct research on non-white identities in France, but the focus of her research shifted after she arrived and began to better understand the culture and its impact on her ability to find interviewees.

Ultimately, Chloe’s research focused on translation, cultural differences and the way people talk about race. She gave a presentation, “Re-Learning Race: On Language and Culture in Montpellier, France,” during this year’s GREAT Day, which features research, performance and other academic work by students.

Chloe's personal history sparked her desire to study French. Her mom is Irish and her father, whom she’s never met, is Haitian. She says she felt studying abroad would help her become more connected to part of her culture that she didn’t know much about. Abroad, she noticed many differences between the United States and France, but there were a number of similarities.

Back in Geneseo, she has been involved in several organizations on campus, including: Sigma Tau Delta, the English Honor Society, Golden Key, the international honor society, and Pi Delta Phi, the French Honor Society. She has also held a number of leadership positions, and was a choreographer for Orchesis and a resident assistant for fellow students.

“Being able to hold leadership roles has really helped me grow as a person,” Chloe says.

Assistant Professor of English Lytton Smith has been a mentor, says Chloe. She recently conducted a directed study under him. “Lytton has helped me develop a lot as a student and a person,” she says.

Chloe says Geneseo’s small and close campus environment and its welcoming community helped her achieve her goals. People really work to create a space space, she says.

“There are some really incredible students and faculty members working against a toxic social and political climate to create safe spaces here at Geneseo. Finding a sense of community within these people and spaces has been integral to my positive experience as a Geneseo student, and I'm so grateful for having felt so welcome in this community."

After graduation, Chloe plans to move to Buffalo and work while taking a gap year to decide whether to pursue a masters degree in social work or a masters of fine arts degree in London.

— By Genna Amick '17, Academic Affairs intern