For Meredith Forcier ’20 (BS Biomedical Engineering/International and Global Studies; MS Management), the truth is self-evident....Read Story
Whether it’s gathering around the piano during holidays or attending the same college, everyone loves a good family tradition, and the Gulezian siblings are no different. Known affectionately at their town’s theater group as the “von Gulezians” in a nod to The Sound of Music’s von Trapp family, Stephanie ’18, Olivia ’20, and Zachary ’23 have been bringing their talents—both musical and academic—to WPI since 2014.
Ask the Gulezians about their relationship, and you get the usual jabs. They readily admit that their strong personalities set them up for sibling rivalries and quirky facts—their group chat is dedicated to not just family news but their mutual love of memes. What connects them most strongly is their passion for music, a component of WPI that proved crucial to Stephanie’s decision to attend herself, and ultimately set a trend for her younger siblings.
“The experience in project work that WPI offers … helped me develop my management skills and ability to thrive in team environments,” she says.
While she knows what she learned at WPI is invaluable, what sticks with her is the campus community, something she shared regularly with her siblings when they came to visit her or watch her perform. “I think meeting my friends and seeing how caring the community is really influenced them to choose WPI.”
That community aspect certainly rang true for Olivia, the next Gulezian to set foot on Boynton Hill. As a member of Phi Sigma Sigma and the Technichords, she also performed with VOX. Although she may have followed in her sister’s footsteps, but she’s a trailblazer in her own right—she’s WPI’s first undergraduate student earning a bachelor’s degree in data science, and has already secured a gig as a business analyst at Boston Scientific.
While she too has a love for the arts, she cites one moment in particular as a big selling point in her decision to attend WPI: after her car had been snowed in during a wintertime visit with Stephanie, a handful of students neither of them knew volunteered to help dig the car out of the snow and got her safely on her way.
“That gave me a glimpse into the character of the students at this school,” she says— and the rest is history.
At least, until Zachary made his decision to attend the school.
While Olivia says she knew her brother would love attending WPI—and he’d had plenty of experiences himself to aid in his decision—he didn’t feel any pressure from his sisters to apply or even ultimately attend—he just wanted to. An electrical and computer engineering major, Zachary’s involved in similar organizations as his sisters (Glee Club, Sound Logic, Masque, and VOX), but what sealed the deal about WPI for him was its unique class structure and the size of the campus. “I like being part of a smaller school and getting to know people more intimately, because life is all about connections,” he explains.
The Gulezian siblings have spent years complementing, celebrating, and supporting each other’s strengths and achievements, and for Olivia, the opportunity to do so on the same college campus has been music to her ears.
“I’m fortunate that I got to attend part of my college experience with both of my siblings,” she says. “It’s quite rare, and really special.”