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College of Arts and Sciences

Tasha Gottschalk-Fielding: 'I'll be pursuing a career as a legal advocate for people seeking refugee status in the U.S.'

May 2, 2018

Tasha Gottschalk Fielding

American Studies

Marcellus, NY

What is your main extracurricular activity--why is it important to you?

One of my main extracurricular activities for the past two years has been helping to found and oversee Cornell Votes, a bipartisan student organization that seeks to increase voter registration on campus. For me, this group has been a very important way to put into practice my beliefs about the importance of civic engagement among people of my generation. Every student that fills out a voter registration form brings our generation one step closer to having our voices fully represented in our political system and our perspectives recognized in current legislation.

What do you value about your liberal arts education?

For me, one of the greatest takeaways from my liberal arts education has been learning how to engage constructively with other people’s opinions, whether that has been through analyzing class readings or engaging in discussions with other students. I believe this ability to recognize and interact respectfully with others’ perspectives is an essential skill to have in our increasingly polarized society. Looking to my plans for the future, I also believe that the liberal arts’ emphasis on learning to express opinions and arguments in a clear and logical manner has provided me with an invaluable set of skills for my future career in law.

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

After taking a gap year, I am planning to attend law school with a focus in immigration law. While I came to Cornell with an interest in law, the classes I have taken during the past four years on Latin America and the U.S. immigration system have led to my decision to pursue a career as a legal advocate for people seeking refugee status in the United States. Ten years from now, I also hope to be continuing my involvement in civic activities by participating in local politics and being an active member of whatever community I find myself in.

 Tasha Gottschalk-Fielding

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