“As an active leader on campus in admissions, residence life, dance, student activities and being an excellent student, Andy empowers others because he leads by example and with soul,” said one of Andy Halstead’s recommenders for the Senior Leadership Award. “Over his four years he has grown stronger and has never lost his passion and enthusiasm for this University,” commented another recommender for the Immaculata Mission and Vision Award.
True to these words, enthusiasm and energy abound with Halstead. And he has brought these qualities to all of his activities, academic and extra-curricular, at Immaculata.
A French major with certification in elementary and special education, Halstead can claim a slew of honors and awards: he is a member of Pi Delta Phi for French, the Immaculata Honor Society and Honors Program, and Phi Delta Kappa for education, and he has received the Senior Leadership Award and the Mission and Vision Award. Not anxious to leave his alma mater, he plans to study educational leadership in Immaculata’s graduate program and then teach special education.
As a resident assistant, Halstead asked each guy on his hall to bring in a photo they liked and share it with the group. His photo? Britney Spears wearing a black top hat.
Well-known on campus as an expert hip-hop dancer, Halstead is a member of Immaculata’s dance company and the hip-hop group Double S. He choreographed and performed in IU’s dance routine at the Wells Fargo Center for Immaculata Night where the 76ers played the Miami Heat. Halstead also used his talents to entertain kids with learning disabilities during a Mac Buddies service trip to New Orleans. During a lull one day, he and a classmate pulled some of the kids up on stage to dance with them.
Halstead spent a summer in Provence, France, studying the history of the region and advanced French. While there, he furthered his dancing career by performing at various pubs and clubs, savored leisurely three- or four-hour gourmet dinners with his host family, admired fields of lavender, and jumped off cliffs into crystalline blue lakes. “It was an all-around awesome experience,” he remarks.
Halstead has endured the heat inside Mac, the mascot’s fuzzy grey costume—a job well-suited to his gregarious personality. In keeping with this outgoing nature, he has been a student leader for New Student Orientation and a first-year experience peer mentor, working with professors in a class of freshmen to help them adjust to college life. And he enjoyed the distinction of winning the Mr. Immaculata competition as a lowly freshman. His crown is proudly displayed in his room.
Halstead appreciates Madame Kathleen Clark, associate professor of French, who has served as his adviser for the past four years. “She really watches out for you,” he says, and commends her good organization. He also appreciated the advice of Sister Marcille McEntee, IHM, his freshman English professor, that no matter what he chose as his major, he would need to learn how to express his ideas well in writing.
Halstead admires the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary for founding Immaculata at a time when women didn’t often venture outside the kitchen, much less get an education. Studying at Immaculata reinforced his appreciation for strong women and his resolve not to underestimate the underdog.
“I felt like I was supposed to be here,” Halstead reflects, mentioning that his devotion to Mary and the school’s location close to his Glenolden, Pennsylvania home led him to choose Immaculata. “It was a good decision.”