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Transfer student Sonia Langhorne ’25 embraces life at Randolph

Sonia Langhorne poses in the library

Sonia Langhorne ’25

This story appears in the Spring 2024 edition of Vita Abundantior, the Magazine of Randolph College.

In 2018, transfer student Sonia Langhorne ’25 wrote a 5- to 10-year plan that included going back to school. 

She’d previously attended Virginia Commonwealth University, right after graduating from high school in 1999, and Central Virginia Community College in 2005. But, having grown up in Lynchburg, she’d always had her eye on Randolph. 

“I realized that I needed a smaller institution that was closer to home,” said Langhorne, whose son, Amaru, is 8 years old. “I was just always drawn to this campus and this school, a safe space that I somehow knew I could thrive in.” 

She was accepted to Randolph in 2022. 

Langhorne is majoring in psychology while balancing classes with motherhood and a full-time job. She’s also a poet and playwright who has performed locally and beyond. 

Somehow, she’s still found time to get that Randolph experience, serving as a Presidential Ambassador and as part of the College’s exam committee. She’s also a member of the step team and the honor societies Omicron Delta Kappa and Psi Chi. 

Here’s more of what she had to say about life behind the Red Brick Wall: 

What inspired you to chase that dream and apply to Randolph?
“I was at a crossroads in my life, this time with my son, and I knew I needed to do something for me. I needed to finish what I started, my degree in psychology, and show my son a different life. Him seeing me go back to school at my age, while working, and taking care of him by myself, shows that he has no excuses in life. When he was 3 years old, he saw me write down on a piece of paper a goal that I never gave up on, and it came true. He sees me thriving and coming back to life right before his eyes, and it all started with writing that list.”

What has your time behind the Red Brick Wall been like so far?
“It has been phenomenal. I feel so honored to come to Randolph each day, to a place where I get to be me, not just a student ID number or first initial and last name. That means a lot to me.” 

What is it like being a transfer student here?
“When you transfer to a new school, it’s like transferring to a new culture and a new family. I’m grateful I was accepted with open arms into this Randolph community and family. Having students, staff, and faculty who help without judging is priceless. Things have changed in the last 20-plus years and, as a student of a certain age, as I like to call myself, I never feel as though I’m going to be talked down to, talked about when I leave, or judged for not knowing something.”

What advice would you give to other transfer students?
“I would advise them to get to know their advisors ASAP, as they are going to be your lifelines! Get into an activity! Bring YOURSELF every day, and watch how well you fit in! Apply for scholarships and grants, internships, and summer opportunities. You never know what can come out of these. Attend a few luncheons and get to know the faculty members and visiting professors. Take a walk around campus and just breathe.” 

What is special about Randolph?
“What is special to me is I’m doing this on my terms, for my reasons, in my timing, and I fit in somewhere finally, after feeling like I fit ‘out’ for so long. I also get to do this with my son! He has been with me every step of the way. I literally feel like we are getting this degree together. As a mother, when you know your child is safe and in a loving environment, the sky’s the limit as to what you can do because you are able to breathe easier, and know that the most important part of you is safe, sane, and secure. I couldn’t ask for anything more for myself, or my son. Randolph is a stepping stone for us that we will never forget.”

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