Adrianne Havlicek-Liggett and Kendall Liggett, Class of 2020

Mother-daughter Adrianne Havlicek-Liggett `96/`20G and Kendall Liggett `20 will both celebrate graduations at the 2020 Commencement ceremony. Adrianne is a longtime Raider, having earned her undergraduate degree and now MBA at Rivier. Kendall is a Class of 2020 Education major and Raider softball team veteran.

They have generously shared their experiences with us in this interview. 

Q:  How would you describe the experience of going to college at the same time as your daughter/mother?

Adrianne:  It was a very interesting experience from my perspective. Kendall was an on-site, full-time student where I was strictly the remote, part-time, online learner. One of the best parts of going to college at the same time was that Kendall was a Canvas platform expert by the time I started my program. It was very helpful to have a personal Canvas guru.

Kendall:  Being in school at the same time and at the same school gave us opportunities most mothers and daughters don’t have, like being able to share our experiences and love for Rivier as University Ambassadors. It was also helpful in moments that were stressful or during times of defeat. We were able to vent to each other and come up with solutions. Having her in those times was definitely a blessing, and it was helpful to have an adult point of view on school stress.

Does graduating together hold a special meaning for you?

Adrianne:  It certainly holds a special meaning for me. It wasn’t until I was halfway through my program that I realized our degrees would be conferred at the same time. I am extremely proud of all that Kendall has accomplished at Rivier and having the opportunity to share in this one last rite of passage is a heartfelt moment.

Kendall:  Being able to walk together for graduation is going to be very special. Last year, I was really struggling with deciding if I wanted to go to graduate school or not. Being able to not only watch her go through her classes and succeed, and then to watch her walk, solidifies that when I go to grad school, I WILL be able to do it. I have joked with her that when she walks across the stage I’m going to yell, “THAT’S MY MOM!!!” and, honestly, I probably will.

Q:  What influenced you both to attend Rivier University? Was Rivier a natural choice?

Adrianne:  As an alumna of Rivier College, Class of 1996, it wasn’t a hard decision to return to Rivier. It had always been my intention to continue my education, but life took several unexpected turns, so it never seemed like the right time. At the beginning of 2018, that proverbial light bulb went off; I realized if I didn’t pursue my master’s then, I probably wouldn’t. Within a month I had applied, was accepted, and had started my journey.

Kendall:  Rivier’s Education program was the biggest deciding factor. It was the only program that had you in the classroom in your first year. The small community size allowed me to easily become involved in numerous clubs and organizations and provided greater opportunity for leadership roles. Additionally, being recruited to play college softball also played into my decision to attend Rivier.

Adrianne:  From the beginning of the college search, I discussed with Kendall that she needed to find the place that would be a good fit for her, and not to think about where mom and dad, a Clarkson University alum, had gone. That said, when her acceptance letter came, the smile she developed—along with the tears shed—was all that I needed to know that she had found her college home. My heart swelled with pride and happiness.

Q:  What have been the most meaningful experiences in your Rivier education individually and as mother and daughter?

Adrianne:  One meaningful experience for me was becoming a Parent Ambassador, which happened before I enrolled in my master’s program. Kendall has been a Student Ambassador for four years. As a mother-daughter duo, one of the most meaningful moments was when we worked the “Ask a Student” and “Ask a Parent” tables at this past year’s Open Houses. This gave us another shared experience as we both represented Rivier, but from two different perspectives.

Kendall:  Individually, my most meaningful experience has been the “REACH@Riv” program, where I met someone who wound up being a lifelong friend and roommate while at Rivier. Another very meaningful experience was when I was inducted into Chi Alpha Sigma (the student-athlete honor society), which showed me that I was able to balance my two favorite things—education and softball—as well as numerous club and leadership roles. My induction goes to show that if you put your mind to something, you can do it.

Another meaningful experience was when our final grades came in each semester. My mother and I were able to celebrate our successes together and know that even though we did the hard work individually, it was being together that helped us make it through and come out on top.