Bards Annual Publishes Poetry of Albertus English Major

Mikayla Lyston is an English major with an Education minor, graduating in 2023. She was a dual-sport athlete (field hockey goalie and softball catcher), but stopped playing sports after sustaining an injury last Fall. She is also super-involved on campus as an orientation leader. She loves the personalized attention she’s experienced at Albertus.

“I love the classes. My boyfriend went to Michigan State University and I went to one of his classes and it made me realize why I like Albertus. I don’t feel like I’m student #243. I’m Mikayla Lyston. People know me for me.”

The top three Albertus professors who have made a difference in her undergrad journey? Drs. Robichaud, Cole and Fratini.

“Connection is great between professors and students. I talk to my professors on a daily basis.”

After graduation, she wants to do a dual Master’s in English and Special Education, and hopefully get to teach creative writing; perhaps to middle schoolers or high schoolers. She is in an independent study this semester to work on her poetry, and hopes to inspire others with it.

“Writing, whether you’re keeping it to yourself or sharing it, is still this unique form of expression.”

She says poetry opened a new door for her. She started writing in high school in 2018. When she came to college, joining Albertus’ annual arts journal, Breakwater, seemed to be the perfect fit. The group was definitely an influencer for her and she has multiple pieces that made it into the publication.

“It’s amazing that all of these people in my college get to see my work and how I write. It’s a moment of vulnerability but also a spotlight moment which I am very proud of.”

Her work has since extended beyond Breakwater. Her mom had her enter the Bards Annual writing contest in April 2022. 

“At first it was like, ugh, mom’s forcing me to do something; I don’t really know if I should do it.”

But she did and it paid off. She heard back in August that one of the three pieces she submitted, entitled “Orange and Teal,” was going to be published. “I was freaking out. I didn’t even know how to react to that. I was just looking at the email like wow, this just happened!” Her next goal is to turn “Orange and Teal” into a book for Amazon. She wants other people to experience what she has experienced with writing.

“My work is my emotions being poured out onto a page. It’s honestly a therapy.”

She is taking her passion for creative therapy to a new level with a club she recently started on campus – the Lotus Club – which is a peer-to-peer educator group that teaches students how to work on breathing techniques, yoga, and meditation, improving their mental and physical health.

“After explaining to students my goals for this club, they were very excited. We’re going to promote taking time for ourselves, because I feel like people don’t do that at all anymore. Student don’t always know how to handle stress properly, and if there’s a resource that can provide that, great.”

Leave a Reply