Richard Nixon in 1974 at the State of the Union

President Richard Nixon, shown here delivering the State of the Union address in early 1974, also left his job at the end of the summer. (Photography by Marion S. Trikosko, Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, U.S. News & World Report Magazine Collection, LC-DIG-ppmsca-55449)

Summer jobs with Nixon and Fermi

In the Q&A section of the College Review, the Core’s email newsletter, we asked alumni to tell us about a memorable summer job.


During the summer of 1974, I worked with a group of folks coding applications to the College. There were four of us, and as we worked in a small room at a big table, we listened to the House impeachment hearings on the radio. The hearings were fascinating and stupefying. We persevered and on August 8, 1974, Nixon resigned. My summer experience fed into my graduate studies at Syracuse University. The title of my dissertation was “Richard Nixon: Representative Religious American.”—Jill P. Strachan, AB’71, AM’72


I spent one summer delivering Crain’s Chicago Business into vending boxes all around Chicagoland. Customers would deposit a dollar in coins, open the box, and pull out the magazine. On Friday afternoon, I picked up the company van on Rush Street and drove to Crystal Lake to get the latest issue. I proceeded to put on a couple hundred miles filling the vending boxes, returning to Hyde Park around eight Saturday morning and promptly falling asleep. I kept the company van over the weekend because this process started all over again on Monday morning around five, at which point I covered the portion of the Chicago area I had not done. I learned every inch of the region’s roads, and pulled many more all-nighters than during the academic year.—Steven Goodman, AB’82


The summer after my first year, I completed a Metcalf Internship at International House. My job was to organize the applications of former residents from the 1930s to the present. I remember seeing Enrico Fermi’s application; under awards, he had written “Nobel Prize in Physics, 1938.” The most memorable application was that of my great-uncle, Chang-Yun “Charlie” Fan, PhD’52, who lived in I-House when he was a grad student in physics. There was also a photo of him. I made a copy of his application and sent it to his children. Years later I found his dissertation in the stacks of Crerar.—Lisa L. Fan, AB’12, JD’18, MBA’18

Next question: What was your most memorable experience at Doc Films? Did you see a film that changed your life? Work as a projectionist or a pösternaut? Have a first date with your eventual spouse? Send your shot-by-shot description to