Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Why did you choose Cornell?
I chose Cornell because it symbolizes endless possibilities for me. Given my rather humble background, I could not have possibly imagined how great an opportunity it is to spend four years among some of the brightest students in the world and have direct access to globally renowned faculty. I can’t say it has been an easy journey, nor would I like to, as that is not my reason for choosing to come here. In May 2014, when I decided to come to Cornell, it meant forgoing college in my hometown and being close to my parents and friends with whom I grew up. It meant flying for the first time 7,000 miles across the ocean, getting used to the American way of life, and most importantly excelling at an Ivy League Institution. Notwithstanding all this pressure and uncertainty, I asked myself “why not?” Four years later, the more I reflect on it, the more I realize how much I have grown over the past couple of years.
Who or what influenced your Cornell education the most? How or why?
The people I met throughout my undergraduate career have influenced my education the most. I was very shy during my first few semesters here at Cornell, but when I started challenging myself to go out of my comfort zone and connect with people, I really felt like I belonged here. I learned that networking need not be just in formal settings. It is a lifestyle and the more you put yourself out there, the more you get to really appreciate the diversity that Cornell has to offer whether it is in regards to cultural background, intellectual interests or political affiliation.
Anything you'd like to add about yourself that these questions didn't address?
When all is said and done, it is always important to remember your roots and those who helped you along the way.