20 Questions with Director of Communications Michael Strysick
November 3, 2011
Director of Communications.
2. Where did you grow up (and describe the place in one phrase or sentence)?
Burnsville, Minn., a southern suburb of Minneapolis where The Artist Formerly Known as Prince once lived. Old man Johnson’s farm, referenced in “Raspberry Beret,” was close by.
3. What are your hobbies?
Anything to do with my family, as well as running, playing tennis, walking the dog and trying to renovate a 100-year-old home on West Lexington Avenue.
4. What is your dream vacation?
Taking my wife to Spain.
5. Favorite artist and/or work of art?
Right now, anything created by my daughters Claire (10) and Chloe (6). Then Cy Twombly.
6. Favorite novel or poem?
A toss-up between “The Duino Elegies” by Rainer Maria Rilke and “Leaves of Grass” by Walt Whitman.
7. Favorite sport (to watch or play)?
I got spoiled on ACC basketball when at Wake Forest, so college hoops to watch, and I’m grateful for so many wonderful tennis players in Danville to remind me I’m not Rafael Nadal.
8. Favorite TV show?
Past was “Six Feet Under,” and current are “Mad Men” and “The Tudors.”
9. Favorite album?
Just one? The Beatles’ White Album.
10. Favorite holiday?
Christmas, for sure.
11. Favorite food?
Pizza, with pepperoni, black olives and mushrooms.
12. Most prized possession?
Not really a possession, but I value my family most.
13. Three people, living or deceased, whom you’d invite to the same dinner party?
Walt Whitman, Rainer Maria Rilke and J.S. Bach.
14. Favorite aspect of your job?
Great colleagues and the sheer variety of challenges presented on a daily basis.
15. Most memorable experience of your youth?
Catching a big king salmon while fishing in Sheboygan, Wis., on Lake Michigan with my grandfather.
16. What would you be doing if you weren't working at Centre?
Teaching college-level English.
17. Educational experience that's been most helpful to you?
Being sent to the principal’s office in elementary school.
18. Fictional character in whose shoes you’d love to spend a day?
19. Favorite place on campus (and why)?
Old Centre, because it reminds me of the rich tradition of which I’m privileged to be a part.
20. Advice you'd give to a first-year college student to make success more likely?
Rilke said it best: “Live your questions now, and perhaps even without knowing it, you will live along some distant day into your answers.”
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Centre College, founded in 1819 and chosen to host its second Vice Presidential Debate in 2012, is ranked among the U.S. News top 50 national liberal arts colleges, at 42nd in the nation, and ranks 27th for best value among national liberal arts colleges. Forbes magazine ranks Centre 34th among all the nation’s colleges and universities and has named Centre in the top five among all institutions of higher education in the South for three years in a row. The 2010 Open Doors Report, published by the Institute for International Education, ranks the College second in the nation for percentage of students who study abroad.For more, click here.