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Brida Twins Come to Keene State From Arkansas

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Annie (left) and Julia Brida
Annie (left) and Julia Brida

Twin sisters Annie and Julia Brida thought they had their college plans all figured out. After much thought and deliberation, they had decided to stay local and attend the University of Arkansas in their hometown of Fayetteville.

But those plans suddenly changed when their father Gary informed his daughters he had taken a new job in Keene, NH. Instead of becoming Razorbacks and walking up and down the more than three miles of sidewalks crisscrossing the University of Arkansas campus, the twins have become Owls ambling down Appian Way.

While the two miss their friends, the warmer weather, and some southern foods, they both feel their move up north and their experiences at Keene State have worked out just fine.

“I’m happy that I moved here. I think it’s really a good idea for people to get out of their comfort zone and do something new,” said Annie, who is four minutes older than her twin sister. “I think Keene State is the perfect fit for the person that I am.”

Julia added, “I’m happy going to a smaller school. My teachers notice me in class and you see people you know all the time. I like that.” Moving was nothing new for the Bridas, who had lived in several states before coming to Keene. The two also traveled with their high school band, playing at Carnegie Hall and marching in the Philadelphia Thanksgiving Day parade as seniors.

Annie and Julia decided to take a gap year to get acclimated to their new surroundings before enrolling at Keene State. They kept busy with jobs and exploring the area, climbing Mount Monadnock and skiing for the first time.

Begin pull-quote…I’m happy going to a smaller school. My teachers notice me in class and you see people you know all the time. I like that. …end pull-quote
– Julia Brida

Annie called it the longest time of her life. “I was so ready to go back to school,” she said.

The twins reside in the same dorm, but picked different majors. Annie, who works as a bank teller downtown, decided to major in economics, while Julia, who got a job at a candy shop, chose nutrition. They’ve also gotten involved with different clubs on campus. Annie is treasurer of the freshman class while Julia has gotten involved with the annual Relay for Life event. Both are on the freshmen e-board, planning events for the 2019 class.

The Bridas have also looked into joining a sorority next year. They attended a recruitment event for Delta Phi Epsilon Sorority, where they were surprised to find out that they weren’t the only KSC students from Arkansas. Megan Pirtle, a senior from Little Rock, joined the sorority last year.

“It’s a great conservation starter,” said Pritle about coming to Keene State from the state noted for Walmart, Tyson and Bill and Hilary Clinton. “People think it’s pretty cool.”

Pritle and the twins reminisced about growing up in Arkansas and adjusting to school up north.

All three concluded that coming Keene State has been a positive move. “Our high school friends who went to the University of Arkansas are still hanging out with each other, and we’ve been able to experience something different than all of them,” said Annie Brida. “We learned to take our education seriously.”

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229 Main Street
Keene, New Hampshire 03435