Many Lehigh students in the class of 2021 are following in their parent’s footsteps and becoming legacies who will soon join their parents in the alumni community.
Spencer Moros, ‘21, and Carolyn Simmet, ‘21, are both legacy students and share a special bond with their parents through their common Lehigh experience.
Stephanie Moros, ‘93, Spencer Moros’ mother, a former chemical engineering student, said she enjoyed the rigorous education and the campus and learning environments at Lehigh. She also liked that the campus was a quick trip to Philadelphia and New York.
Both Stephanie Moros and Jen Simmet, ‘90, Carolyn Simmet’s mother, did not pressure their children to attend Lehigh, however, both were excited that their children decided to become Lehigh students.
Jen Simmet said she never pushed her daughter to attend Lehigh and wanted her to be able to explore her own interests, but she was thrilled that she chose Lehigh and was happy she was able to make the experience her own.
In addition to her son, Spencer, Stephanie Moros’ daughter is a member of the Lehigh class of 2023.
Stephanie Moros said knowing all three of her children would be going off to college was overwhelming, but being so familiar with Lehigh gave her a sense of comfort.
“I didn’t influence them, I tried to let them make their own decisions, and then [Spencer] picked Lehigh based on, you know, the opportunities it afforded him,” Stephanie Moros said.
Although he is a soon-to-be graduate, Spencer Moros was initially hesitant when applying to Lehigh.
“I always felt like it was diminishing my accomplishments a little, like in my merit to be at the school,” Spencer Moros said. “But in my experience at Lehigh, I found out that absolutely wasn’t the case. And I think I’m very well suited to be where I am.”
Carolyn Simmet said she admires her mother’s career path, and probably wouldn’t have looked into Lehigh seriously if it weren’t her mother’s alma mater.
“I like the decisions she made and the doors Lehigh opened for her, so I was inspired by that,” Carolyn Simmet said.
Many professors from Stephanie Moros and Jen Simmet’s time at Lehigh still teach today.
Professor Diane Hyland was Jen Simmet’s psychology professor, advisor and she was planning to work as her assistant during her last semester at Lehigh. That year, however, Hyland traveled to adopt a child and Simmet said she always wondered how things worked out for her and her family.
“And then I was so pleased because Carolyn actually had her for one class,” Jen Simmet said. “What are the chances of that happening? So I was able to say, hey, her daughter’s all grown up now.”
As both Spencer and Stephanie studied engineering, Spencer Moros said his mother would tell him about the fun times she had at Lehigh, but also warn him about harder professors.
When visiting campus as a prospective student, Spencer Moros said his mother’s familiarity with Lehigh helped him feel more comfortable.
“What really was the main factor for me was accepted students day,” Spencer Moros said. “I felt like I really met a lot of people that I could connect with there.”
Similarly, as a business student, both Carolyn Simmet and her mother felt that Lehigh aligned with her academic and social needs.
The Lehigh-Lafayette rivalry football game is a Lehigh event looked fondly upon by both parent-child pairs.
One of Jen Simmet’s favorite memories was the final football game to be held at Taylor Stadium in 1988.
“At the end of the game, everyone rushed the goalposts, but they went a little bit nuts,” Jen Simmet said. “Not only did they take the goalposts down, they started disassembling (the) bleachers.”
Jen Simmet still has the picture of her and her hall mates holding a piece of Taylor Stadium. She said almost every student harbored a piece of the stadium in their dorm from that day.
Carolyn Simmet said she loved the football games and being a part of the Lehigh Cheerleading Team. Some of her favorite memories at Lehigh were tailgating and watching football games with her family.
She said she likes that she shares common experiences of Lehigh traditions with her mother and they often compare their campus experiences. Similarly, Spencer Moros said he enjoys the bond him and his mother share through their time at Lehigh.
“I came in as a legacy and I was hesitant,” Spencer Moros said. “I didn’t know what to expect, I didn’t know what that would mean, but I feel like having gone through all of college now, I feel like that’s a special connection my mom and I have.”