Julia Remillard (’18) follows her dreams in New York City
By Rebekah Dalmer
NEW YORK — From her roots in small town St. Albans, Julia Remillard has followed her dreams to New York City.
After graduating from Bellows Free Academy-St. Albans in 2018, Remillard attended Long Island University Brooklyn and earned a Bachelor’s degree in English with an acting minor.
Now, she is working for the New York Post as a social media marketing manager. When asked what it was like landing this job, Remillard said she “had a really tough time with applying for jobs and handling the discouragement [she] felt over being rejected for all the positions [she] longed for.”
“It took faith and patience to land my role now at the New York Post,” she said.
Remillard’s dream of living in NYC and being a writer started even before high school. Although she wasn’t entirely sure what her career would be coming out of high school, Remillard being a marketing manager was not at all the job she expected it to be.
“It was not the route I thought my career would take me back in high school and even college,” she said.
However, she said she is fortunate to have found the position and grateful for the freedom and exploration it offers her.
“For me, my English classes and Poetry Out Loud were definitely some major highlights of my time [at BFA],” Remillard said.
Remillard was BFA’s Poetry Out Loud champion in 2018.
Today, half of her work day consists of helping out on the main social media team by posting to all social platforms. The other half of her day consists of meetings with coworkers and outside brands to set up merchandise collaboration for the online store, finding new ways to promote the Post’s podcasts and commerce across socials, creating content, researching shopping trends and overall just constantly discovering new days to package various content to bring people in.
Remillard would give BFA students three pieces of advice:
“Believe in yourself fiercely. Many people doubted me, I felt, in high school for the size of my aspirations, but what I know now is that being your biggest fan will always pay off in the long run. Your dreams are never too big.”
“Be open to things changing… I soon realized that sometimes the way to dreams is through new dreams.”
“Be gentle with yourself…Take self-care seriously and allow yourself to slow down; it truly is not a race. Not every opportunity will come easy but, at the end of the day, compassion for your journey is so important.”
Finally, Remillard said: “For anyone who has big dreams outside of St. Albans or even Vermont, just know you can have it, it’s not impossible at all. One of my favorite movies [‘Mamma Mia!’] says it best, ‘Life is short, the world is wide, I wanna make some memories’”
Haley Seymour (’19) pursues journalism beyond high school
By Rachel Ledoux
BURLINGTON — For many students, pursuing a college degree is a means of honing their talent in a certain field.
Haley Seymour (‘19), a Bellows Free Academy-St. Albans alum, is a prime example of how graduates can utilize skills from high school in these fields.
During her time at BFA, Seymour had a passion for journalism and creative writing. She served first as a writer, then co-editor of The Mercury, and she took the journalism class as an upperclassman.
Seymour said the skills she learned as a Mercury staff member and journalism student benefitted her greatly going into college. She also expressed an appreciation for Poetry Out Loud, which helped to improve her confidence when public speaking.
“I can’t imagine what it would have been like, to start college without [the knowledge I gained in those activities],” Seymour said. “It really set me up to succeed from the start.”
Seymour added The Mercury helped her discover her interest in pursuing a career in communications.
“Having that background definitely inspired me,” Seymour said.
Now a senior at Champlain College, Seymour is majoring in professional writing with a journalism concentration, with a minor in public relations. She is also editor-in-chief of the school’s newspaper, The Crossover.
Despite graduating years ago, Seymour has remained involved with BFA activities. Seymour said that just last week, she visited Larissa Hebert’s journalism class to speak with students about her experiences as an editor and student studying journalism.
On top of that, Seymour has contributed to journalism outside of school as a student editor for VTDigger’s Underground Workshop.
Seymour will be graduating from college in May, and discussed some of her plans moving forward. She’s planning to stay in Vermont with her boyfriend, and that she is looking into a range of career paths, from journalism to marketing.
“I’ve been doing a bit of networking with Vermont newspapers, just trying to get my name out there for now,” Seymour said.
To close, Seymour shared some advice for BFA students.
“Some [high school students] think that they have to go to college, work a nine-to-five [job] and get married in order to be successful,” Seymour said. “And that’s completely fine for some people, but it doesn’t work for everyone.”
Seymour said real success comes from paving your own way rather than just doing things because they are considered successful by others.
“It’s important to follow the path that you need to be on, and not the path that somebody else is setting up for you,” she said.
Editor's Note: Versions of these stories first appeared in The Mercury, the student newspaper at BFA-St. Albans.