Oral Histories

Sammy Nguyen, Akash Moradia, and Stephanie Pace Marshall

Streaming Media


Sammy Nguyen, Akash Moradia, and Stephanie Pace Marshall



Two members of the class of 2009, Sammy Nguyen and Akash Moradia, were roommates while at IMSA. Nguyen describes IMSA like a family because of the close relationships developed between students living on campus, and also the closeness of students and faculty. Moradia feels IMSA offers a unique opportunity, also because of the residential life aspect. He also describes the experience as both unique and chaotic, because so much is expected of students.

Nguyen says academically one of the things that was really important was learning how to solve problems, and that the students were expected to solve them rather than being given the answers by teachers. Moradia says the teachers empowered the students to learn themselves. As examples, Nguyen refers to math problem sets, and Moradia to Dr. Victory's classes where the students had to learn how to build websites from scratch, including writing and editing images.

Asked what they think in retrospect about things they might not have agreed with while at IMSA, Moradia says that the internet shutting off at 1am was, on the whole, probably a good thing. Nguyen also said that the mandatory study hours, while they felt restrictive at the time, they were helpful in terms of getting work done. He says that when he got to college he felt he knew how to manage his time better than his peers. Moradia also says that IMSA made the transition to college easier. Both felt that IMSA gave them confidence going out in the world. IMSA also affected what they value in education, including self-discovery and the opportunities to explore and have fun.

Duration: 15:48




friends, math classes, history classes, residential life, curriculum


Oral History


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Sammy Nguyen, Akash Moradia, and Stephanie Pace Marshall