Now that the decision deadline is getting closer, I want to express my excitement to those of you who have enrolled in Barnard, and leave some last thoughts with those of you who are still deciding.
Being in the second semester of my senior year has caused me to reflect a lot on what I am going to miss about Barnard and the gazillion reasons why I am grateful for the truly remarkable and life-changing education I have received here. I have met some of the most incredible people—students, professors, and administrators—many of whom I know will be central figures in my life for many years to come. Each woman is passionate about something, and she pursues this passion in the way that is right for her. Some of my friends are getting ready to be engineers and doctors, while others are planning on become architects, artists and writers. Others will go on to start their own business, form a non-profit, or focus their energy on a family. The diversity of these passions and the drive with which my peers pursues these passions has inspired me immensely.
I have found that Barnard provides such a unique atmosphere for empowering us as women and equipping us with the tools we will need to be successful in all areas of our lives-- keeping in mind the unique barriers that women often face. I have felt so supported throughout college by the administration, faculty, and my peers and my academic experience has been incredibly rich and personal-- the chair of one of my major departments had us all over to his apartment for a holiday celebration, the chair of my other major department frequently cooks dinner for the seniors who are working on our senior theses, and President Spar invites seniors to her apartment for tea and dessert! From what I have heard from my friends at other colleges, this level of personal attention and care is quite unique. And, since you are in New York City and have access to Columbia, it never feels too small! It really feels like Barnard is invested in all of its students and it is really empowering to go to a women's college where women are valued and ready to take on the world! What a great environment to explore and grown in during such important years in our lives!
When I think back to senior year and my hopes for college, I don’t think I could have ever imagined the woman I would be today or the amazing experiences I would have over the course of the next four years. I photographed Obama during his presidential campaign at the historic Apollo Theater and Fashion Week in Bryant Park for the Columbia daily newspaper. As an intern at the UN, I attended conferences with diplomats, grassroots organizers, and politicians from all over the world. I studied in East Africa for four months, built deeply meaningful personal relationships with my two wonderful host families and did research with an organization that I have worked passionately with since high school. I met a fellow Barnard student that I barely knew for lunch and ended up talking to her for hours and hours. These are just a few of the types of opportunities and experiences that I treasure from my years at Barnard and that await you as a future student.
I feel like my Barnard education and experience has been such a gift and I am so proud to be part of a legacy that encapsulates such incredible women. I hope that you will be joining this legacy as a Barnard student, and I am so excited for the wonderful experiences you have ahead of you! Thoroughly enjoy your last few weeks of high school, the summer and get pumped for the rollercoaster adventure of starting college!
Please feel free to email me at any point during the rest of the year or the summer if you have questions about the transition, what to bring, classes, or anything else! I wish you all of the best in this exciting transition!