Judith Suzuki: 'After years of learning about the Earth, I would like to participate in the never-ending fight to protect it.'

April 26, 2017

Judith Suzuki

Science of Earth Systems

New York, NY

Why did you choose Cornell?

I chose Cornell because of its motto: any person, any study. Applying to college, I had no idea what I wanted to study and who I wanted to become. The motto gave me a sense of reassurance and I knew that I could find a study that would suit me.

What, if any, research projects did you participate in at Cornell?

I participated in a research project within the earth science department with my advisor and multiple graduate students. Together, we deployed and retrieved a local seismic network and are in the process of converting and analyzing the data to get a better understanding of the geology around Ithaca.

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

What I learned during my time in Cornell was that your background does not matter. Even with English not being my first language and coming from a low-income family, I still have managed to flourish here. When I first came to this university, I was so nervous as to how I would be treated and constantly feared being ostracized by students and faculty for my differences. However, I know now that I never had to be afraid of this. Here at Cornell, each student starts off as equals and it's what you do with your time here that makes the greatest difference.

What are your plans for next year; where do you see yourself in 10 years?

In the following years, I hope to find a job in environmental consulting or return to my internship at the U.S. Geological Survey and save money until I feel ready for graduate school. In 10 years, I hope to have obtained a master's degree and be working with a firm that works on land remediation. After years of learning about the Earth, I would like to participate in the never-ending fight to protect it. The way I would like to contribute is by finding ways to rehabilitate damaged lands (mined, farmed, etc.) and bringing them back to a pristine state.

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