Photo of Krissy Horissian '22 on the W&J campus.

First-Generation American Enjoys Presidential Success at W&J

Created: June 21, 2022  |  Last Updated: July 20, 2022  |  Category:   |  Tagged: , , , , ,

WASHINGTON, PA (June 21, 2022) – As a first-generation American, Krissy Horissian ‘22 encountered many challenges, but her dedication and perseverance led to her presidential success at W&J.

Horissian, a communication arts major, came to W&J without the extended family support or the connections that many local college students have.

“One of the most difficult aspects of being a first-generation American is not having any family around you,” Horissian said. “My entire family lives in Europe, with the exception of my mother, father, and brother.”

Although she came to W&J without many connections, Horissian used her senior year to complete an internship with the College’s Center for Professional Pathways.

“The Center for Professional Pathways helped me connect with people who were able to assist me in broadening my knowledge and advancing my career and studies,” she said.

She also quickly became involved in other aspects of campus life, joining Delta Gamma, PRSSA, Lambda Pi Eta, and the National Panhellenic Council.

Horissian used her global background to her advantage, capitalizing on W&J’s many travel opportunities.

“W&J contributed to my global experience because I was able to meet people who came from similar but different backgrounds,” she said. “Additionally, I went on a JayTerm trip to the United Arab Emirates, which expanded my horizons even further.”

She is sincerely grateful for the support that she received from the communication arts department to complete her many experiences at W&J.

“Under the guidance of Dr. Melissa Cook [associate professor of communication arts], I was able to take an independent study and receive certifications in search engine optimization and Google Tag Manager,” she said.

Cook and the rest of the communication arts department recognized Horissian’s growth and hard work, honoring her with the scholar in communication arts award at the 2022 honors convocation.

When asked if she had any advice for current and future students, Horissian emphasized the importance of making connections and getting involved.

“Make sure to get engaged, get involved, and find your people,” she said. “It is so crucial to find people who make your school feel like home, and I knew that I had truly found my home when I invested myself in the College’s organizations.”

At the end of June, Horissian will begin her career as a junior internet marketing specialist for WebFX in Harrisburg, PA.


About Washington & Jefferson College
Washington & Jefferson College, proudly located in Washington, Pa., is a historic liberal arts college founded in 1781 that values ethical leadership, professional readiness, and inclusive communities. Our highly customized and intellectually engaging student experience develops professionals of uncommon integrity to lead in an ever-changing world. For more information about W&J, visit, or call 888-W-AND-JAY.