Samantha Reig: 'Don't write off goals as unreasonable because they’re not in line with your self-expectations.'

April 19, 2017

Samantha Reig

Psychology & Information Science

Mount Kisco, NY

What was your most profound turning point while at Cornell?

I declared my psychology major in the fall of my sophomore year. A few weeks into the spring of that year, I realized that while I loved studying the mind and the brain, I missed doing more technical work. I had already taken a couple of math and science-related courses, and I took on a few more, and ultimately decided to take on a second major in information science. This was definitely a turning point in my college career. It felt like an ambitious move, but when I realized I was doing well in my classes, enjoying the material and on track to graduate even though I’d declared my second major reasonably late, I realized that it’s not wise or useful to write off goals as unreasonable because they’re not in line with your self-expectations. I’ve since gone after my goals with a new level of confidence.

What accomplishments/activities are you most proud of while at Cornell?

I am incredibly proud to be a member of the Cornell University Chorus, and especially proud and humbled to have served as its general manager for the past year. Being a student leader has given me the opportunity to become a better communicator, learn about the practical constraints one has to consider when undertaking any major project and engage with people as they’ve engaged with music, leadership, design, accounting, management and each other. I’m confident the knowledge and skills I’ve acquired through the Chorus will benefit me wherever I go.

How did any of your beliefs or interests change during your time at Cornell?

I thought I was open-minded before I came to college, but I quickly realized during my first semester that I had a ways to go before I could describe myself that way! During my time at Cornell, I’ve evolved in the way I treat my own opinions. Exposure to people who come from different backgrounds and have different beliefs has gotten me into the habit of questioning myself every time I have a strong conviction in order to make sure I’m giving fair consideration to other perspectives. In terms of academics: as an undecided freshman who loved the subjects of English and history, I never thought I’d veer away from the humanities, but I’m going on to graduate school in the sciences. I didn’t transition from humanities to sciences, per se, but expanded my interests to include both.

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