As a child, junior Dominick Ciruzzi couldn't help but "turn everything into a fort or some magical wonderland." That instinct brought Ciruzzi to Geneseo, where he continued to create himself an imaginative community.
"Geneseo really fostered a community aspect in my mind," Ciruzzi said of his first impression of the college. Born in Yonkers, N.Y. and raised in nearby Mahopac, N.Y., he said he feels that Geneseo has allowed him to progress through life in a positive way.
Ciruzzi shares that positivity, as well as his knack for the creative, with a variety of different campus departments. Days into his first semester here, Ciruzzi became involved with his residence hall council. He is also a class of 2012 captain and a lobby host/tour guide in the Office of Admissions.
Ciruzzi got his start in guiding tours when he visited China in 2008 at age 18. He spontaneously led a group of Chinese tourists through Tianenman Square so convincingly that they thanked him with a Mao Zedong watch.
After his first year at Geneseo, he became an orientation advisor and, later, a Resident Assistant in Jones Hall. "I have a fervor to be there and be a good, positive role model," Ciruzzi said. "There are many stories that I can tell [as an RA], but what is important to me is that everyone's safe and maintains an awesome attitude."
Ciruzzi has also taken Geneseo media by storm. He began working with GSTV to produce the program SNEWS and now serves as the station's chief engineer. Additionally, he joined The Lamron's design team in spring 2009 and is now the design editor. Ciruzzi said that all of his skills in design were self-taught through tutorials and experimentation.
Ciruzzi is a physics major with minors in graphics production and mathematics. "The [physics] department is so welcoming that even if I felt it was too hard, it'd be too difficult leaving the close-knit community that it is," he said. "Every single one of the physics faculty is different, but that makes each one even better. I like them all for different reasons."
While Ciruzzi's schedule may sound exceedingly grueling, he maintains a high level of variety in stride. "I'm not afraid to do something different just because it's different. I'm getting diverse experiences in all of these clubs and academically."
Diversity, Ciruzzi said, is one his core values. "I feel it's really important, not only to appreciate others but to appreciate where you come from and accepting that. Once you get to know yourself you can better understand others." Ciruzzi is Filipino, Italian and Irish. His heritage has brought him on several occasions to the Philippines.
Ciruzzi's interest in diversity has also driven him toward several goals. In high school, one of Ciruzzi's accomplishments was creating a program dedicated to teaching elementary students Italian and mentoring them. He also served as president for both the Italian National Honor Society and Italian club. At Geneseo, Ciruzzi has worked with professor Randy Kaplan on a directed study to form an Asian-American calendar.
Of course, there's more. Ciruzzi plays five instruments including the steel drum and still finds time to craft clever puns, which he slips into conversation casually.
What's next for the ambitious junior? He hopes to attend graduate school eventually but will pursue internships or jobs in physics, teaching (particularly Teach for America) or higher education. "Ultimately I don't know what I'll do with everything but I hope that what I'm doing can incorporate it all," he said.