Meet the Ambassadors

 

Name Major / Minor About

Abby Dittmar ’20

Biological Science (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Concentration) Hobbies and Interests: I have been camping for longer than I remember, so many of my hobbies center around the outdoors. I love to hike, kayak, and swim. I have spent the last few years teaching myself calligraphy and I like to practice my handwriting to unwind. I try to do the New York Times crossword puzzle every day and I am very competitive (in a friendly way) so I love playing games and getting into random competitions with my friends.
Why Cornell: I chose Cornell because when I visited its campus, I immediately fell in love. Everything from the natural beauty both on campus and in the Ithaca area to the drive and ambition that I saw in its students felt like it was calling to me. I met people that were not only unapologetically interested in their academic fields, but the people around them encouraged and supported them in their pursuit of knowledge. I realized that Cornell could give me something that I had been craving for years, a place to pursue my passions. I knew that Cornell was a place where intelligence was encouraged and welcomed. It was a place where intellectual conversation could flourish and I could finally feel like I truly belonged.

Alexander Chung ’21

Biology and Society
Hobbies and Interests: Some of the things I am involved in around campus include being a part of a research lab, being in both a pre-professional and social fraternity, and swimming on the club team. While these things keep me busy for the most part, in my free time I love going to the gym, listening to music, and watching movies and tv shows.
Why Cornell: Besides its great reputation and academics, I chose Cornell because I wanted to learn with and from a diverse group of bright and motivated students. Here at Cornell, everyone has a passion and a community they belong to. In my time here I have met so many amazing people that I see as role models and joined communities that have made me want to improve myself. Although things can get hard sometimes, I always get through it with the support of my friends and come out a little stronger each time. Since coming here, I have felt myself grow so much as a person and am excited for the coming years to grow more.

Arminé Kalbakian ’20

Anthropology and Archaeology; Business and Global Health Minors Hobbies and Interests: When I’m not surrounded by bones and artifacts in the arcane McGraw Hall, I spend my time attempting to frequent every restaurant in Ithaca, bartending with Cornell Catering, and watching re-runs of Keeping up with the Kardashians with the Armenian Student Organization. I’m also involved with the First-Generation Student Union, OADI’s First-in-Class program, the Cornell Anthropology Exchange, and work as a research assistant at the Johnson College of Business.
Why Cornell: I chose Cornell in an attempt to embrace the uncomfortable. With classes involving meeting old punk bands at Cornell’s Punk Fest to digging up hotels from the 1800s at the nearby Treman State Park, my academic experience thus far has been far from normal, and I have loved every moment of it. I now find comfort in the unique culture at Cornell and in *gorges* Ithaca at large.

Colton Poore ’20

 Biological Sciences (Systematics and Biotic Diversity Concentration), English; Medieval Studies minor Hobbies and Interests: I love to read and write and am a member of Rainy Day, an undergraduate literary publication, as well as The Quill Guild, a creative writing group on campus. I also love to hike, and so I like to explore all the little trails around Cornell and Ithaca.
Why Cornell: Practically every day of the week there is something interesting going on around campus, whether that be a great movie at the Cornell Cinema, a cool lecture from a visiting professor, or simply an open event featuring free food. Cornell has endless opportunities to have fun and explore your interests outside of classes; I’ve quite literally stumbled upon some really cool things happening around campus just while walking around in between and after my classes.

Dean Kim ’20

Chemistry and Chemical Biology; East Asian Studies Minor Hobbies and Interests: On campus I play the bassoon in the Cornell Wind Symphony, am a member of the Korean American Student Association, and am a brother of Alpha Chi Sigma, the professional chemistry fraternity. I’m also involved in research. In my free time, I like to juggle and take walks around campus (not necessarily at the same time though)!
Why Cornell: I love that there’s so much to explore at Cornell. There’s so many different classes, clubs, and other activities to choose from that I never feel bored here. Sometimes I stop for a moment and take a look around and remind myself just how gorgeous the campus is. Take some time to explore Beebe Lake or the Gorge trails, and definitely stop by the Clock Tower and listen to one of their great Chime Concerts!

Elena Lie-A-Cheong ’21

 

Government; History Minor Hobbies and Interests: Cornell International Affairs Review, Class Council 2021, Student Assembly Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Hong Kong Student Association
Why Cornell: Attending Cornell was the best decision I’ve made thus far. I chose Cornell because it embodied my ideal learning environment. Every Cornellian shares a high-level of intellectual curiosity and are encouraged by the collaborative culture to strive towards our maximum potential. Not only have I explored my interests at Cornell, but I have also discovered new opportunities that I would not have found if not for the wide array of resources, classes, and student organizations. Cornell is a place where everyone around you supports you and wants what’s best for you!

Eric Shen ’20

Physics (Biochemistry concentration), Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Music Hobbies and Interests: I am always on the hunt for good food, photo ops, and flowers (which Ithaca has plenty of)! I love all kinds of music and am a violinist in the Cornell Orchestras and Eastern Music Ensemble. For the Chamber Orchestra, we play a wide variety of concerts and will each be mentoring a student from the Cayuga Heights Elementary School! I am also a part of the Society of Physics Students, which hosts Pizza Talks with researchers, and the Taiwanese American Students Association that holds events like Night Market, Little Formosa, and our culture show eCsTASy! In my spare time, I like to learn other languages by gaming, listening to music, and watching television.
Why Cornell: I think of Cornell as a spice rack. There’s every type of person, activity, and idea to explore by itself or combine together and create a harmony of flavors that resonates specifically with you. Everyone and everything is welcoming and encourages you to try new things or even try something old in a new way. All the people that I meet are interesting and give me another glimpse of the world that makes me want to see and experience even more of what the world has
to offer. But above all else, I am in love with the climate! Cornell is in such a location that the warmth of the summer and cool fall are the perfect opportunity to be outside and see the vibrant colors of Ithaca. Meanwhile, winter is a wonderland that makes me want to prance through the snow and explore a frozen campus.

Eugene Kim ’21

Biological Sciences
Hobbies and Interests: Satisfying my inner science nerd slash lab rat, I am involved in Debate in Science and Health as well as The Research Paper, an undergraduate research magazine. Whenever I need a study break, I love taking walks, especially enjoying beautiful nature-niches scattered around campus with a phone camera in hand. I also enjoy writing short stories that sometimes end up being not-short stories. On a lazy evening, you can find me in my dorm room or basement, probably singing along off-key to alt rock and/or gathered around a board game with my friends.
Why Cornell: Cornell truly is filled to the brim with interesting people and experiences. Instead of worrying whether I’d find a place I belong, I actually ended up finding several in my first semester – and still continue to meet fascinating people with diverse passions and stories. There’s a niche for everyone and everything, big or small. The environment is just so stimulating, socially and culturally as well as academically and intellectually.

Graham Cohen ’20

College Scholar: Computer Science, Linguistics, Spanish Hobbies and Interests: Pi Sigma Epsilon, Pilot Programs Committee Chair and E-board Member (Cornell Undergraduate Research Board), Undergraduate Research Assistant (DSC Lab), Men’s Ultimate Frisbee, Orientation Leader

Hassaan Bin Sabir ’21

Government, History Hobbies and Interests: Cornell Political Union, Pi Lambda Sigma Fellow, Cornell International Affairs Society, Cornell Cricket Club, Foreign Policy Analyst (Cornell Roosevelt Institute)

Islam Elsaid ’20

Chemistry Hobbies and Interests: I love meeting new people and mentoring my peers, so in addition to being an Arts & Sciences Ambassador, on campus I am the VP of Academic Events for the Cornell Association of Medicine and Philanthropy, involved in the Muslim Educational and Cultural Association, an Orientation Leader and Arts & Sciences Peer Advisor. If I am not in class, spending time with my peers, or at work in my research lab in the Chemistry Department, you can find me playing basketball, listening to music (especially pop, hip-hop, and rap), and making people laugh!
Why Cornell: Cornell is an amalgamation of the some of the best and brightest young minds from all over the world. With this incredible mixture inevitably comes a great amount of diversity on campus, not only in regards to race, ethnicity, and religion, but especially with respect to diversity in thought, perspective, and opinion. Being exposed to new ideas, viewpoints, and attitudes each and every day has allowed me to grow both inside and outside the classroom. Cornell’s continual
emphasis on personal exploration and discovery is something very few institutions in the world can rival.

Jack Liufu ’21

Chemistry, Classics Hobbies and Interests: I love singing, whether that be with the Cornell University Glee Club or alone in my room, I rediscovered my love for dance through Hanchum: Traditional Korean Dance. My free time is spent watching movies or TV shows, or taking walks through nature. And of course, getting bubble tea with friends is something I never turn down.

Why Cornell: I grew up in a small town, and as much I do love cities, I love the feeling of being somewhere small, somewhere homely. The nature (and views!) here are simply stunning, and the community is so close-knit. As for Cornell itself, it’s bigger than other Ivies, and that really lets every single person find where they belong. Everybody finds their niche, their group, and everybody succeeds together. Everyone here is also so driven and motivated, never settling, always striving for increasing greatness, and that is something I knew I wanted to be a part of and carry forth myself.

Jeremy Borden ’20

Physics (Astronomy Concentration) Hobbies and Interests: I’m a bit of an astronomy nerd, so stargazing has always been one of my favorite activities. I love running, especially around the beautiful trails on and near campus. I enjoy visiting the Johnson Museum and the Cornell Cinema, and I’m also an embarrassingly avid fan of terrible shark movies (think Sharknado).
Why Cornell: Cornell combines so many wonderful attributes: a beautiful campus, a vibrant and diverse student body, incredible professors, great food, and so much more. I’ve met so many amazing people here, and I truly believe I have found a home within the Cornell community. I’ve been able to immerse myself in the subjects I already knew I loved, but I’ve also been able to find new passions to explore. Even though walking up the slope is still a challenge, I love this place and
I’m so grateful to be a member of this community.

Julian Kroll ’20

Government, English Hobbies and Interests: Though I’ve only spent one full semester at Cornell, I’ve become involved in the CU orchestra as a cellist, took a painting class to count towards an intended fine arts minor, joined several clubs as an activist for environmental and human rights causes, and joined a social fraternity. Looking forward, I plan on becoming more involved in long distance running and political/literary clubs.
Why Cornell: As an institution that is simultaneously elite and extremely egalitarian, I felt that Cornell was a perfect fit for me. Coming from a predominantly midwestern, working class family, I knew that I wanted to study at a place that accepted students from all walks of life and integrated global perspective into all courses of study. Ultimately, I wanted to gain a better understanding of the world around me in the company of people from across the world; I haven’t been
disappointed.

Katie Fehrenbaker ’21

American Studies; Psychology Minor Hobbies and Interests: Outside of Ambassadors, I am the Editor-in-Chief of Slope Media Group, a mentor for YOURS, a Cayuga’s Watcher, and a member of a social sorority, Delta Gamma.

Why Cornell: I chose Cornell because I believe this school offers everything one could hope to find in an institution of higher education. This school offers more courses than I ever could have imagined having access to, a huge variety of extracurricular opportunities, and a faculty driven to help better the academic careers of the future leaders of the world. I love being surrounded by such a diverse student body, with a wide range of backgrounds and perspectives.  To top it all of, Ithaca is the quintessential college town, offering everything a student may need in a remote part of New York State. I believe that Cornell has encouraged me to push boundaries and become the best version of myself.

Kimberly Koh ’20

Comparative Literature;Computer Science Minor Hobbies and Interests: If and when I have a free moment, I enjoy singing off-key while playing the ukulele, reading, and practicing yoga. I love eating ravioli in my friend’s basement in my hometown while chatting about college and eating poke bowl in collegetown while chatting with friends about home. On campus, I write for the Cornell Book Review, am on staff for Rainy Day Literary Magazine, and live with a bunch of freshmen as a Resident Advisor on North Campus.
Why Cornell: Because of the sheer volume of resources and number of students at Cornell, anyone can find a club, class, or study space which suits them perfectly! The size of the campus forces me to take a relaxing (invigorating) 15-minute walk across the beautiful campus every day. Cornell, despite the winter weather, is such a warm and welcoming place. I’ve met so many kind people and have discovered so many unique opportunities which I hope to continue to make the most of for the rest of my Cornell career!

Kyle Abrams ’20

Government Hobbies and Interests: Circle of Sisterhood, Kappa Delta Sorority (Soph. Club Chair), College Mentor for Kids

Matthew Chen ’20

Biology and Society Hobbies and Interests: I love listening to and playing music – I play guitar and piano and am involved in a couple music-related clubs on campus. I also greatly enjoy playing and following sports – being from LA, I am a huge fan of all LA sports. I express my love for sports and for Cornell through my involvement in the Big Red Sports Network as a broadcaster and writer at times. Otherwise, I enjoy working out, surfing, research, enjoying nature, and studying away in Olin stacks.
Why Cornell: I chose Cornell initially because I wanted to get myself out of my “west coast bubble” and explore more of the country while I still could. However, I then completely fell in love with the school when I realized how diverse and welcoming everyone at Cornell is. There are people from all over the country and the world all interested in different things, and yet they all shared them same drive to succeed and willingness to help others that I craved when choosing a university. I believe the College of Arts and Sciences best epitomizes this diversity, and I have enjoyed being able to take so many different classes and learn so much! Having a beautiful campus and tons of things to explore around Ithaca is a great bonus, as well.

Michelle Abramowitz ’21

American Studies; Jewish Studies and History minors Hobbies and Interests: Cornell Hillel Cultural Programming Committee Chair, Cornell Interfaith Council, Jewish Studies Club, Kappa Alpha Pi Pre-Law Fraternity, Alpha Epsilon Phi (Social Sorority).

Mollie Cramer ’20

Government, Biology; Public Policy minors Hobbies and Interests: I’m a writer for the news department of the Cornell Daily Sun and am the Vice President of Publicity for the Cornell Best Buddies organization. I also enjoy being apart of Greek life on campus. In my free time, I like to read (my favorite author is Jodi Picoult) and watch TV (my favorite shows are the Newsroom and Friends). I love exploring Ithaca restaurants and hiking trails.
Why Cornell: I think Cornell is such a big, beautiful, wonderful place. Ithaca has such a fun downtown area and beautiful scenery. I chose Cornell because of the diversity of opportunity here. I’ve taken a wide range of classes from many different departments and have found my academic passions. The people at Cornell are the kindest, funniest, most genuine people I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing. Attending Cornell is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

Natalie Zaba ’20

 Biological Sciences (Neurobiology and Behavior Concentration); International Relations Minor Hobbies and Interests: Outside of class, I enjoy skiing, reading, playing the cello, and going to the Farmer’s Market. On campus, I am an undergraduate research assistant in a Neurobiology and Behavior lab that focuses on understanding the genetic basis of individual recognition. I am also involved in a medical fraternity and was on the Willard Straight Hall Student Union Board of Directors.
Why Cornell: Cornell has been the perfect place for me to explore new interests, ranging anywhere from the brain to Chinese history to International Relations. The school’s dedication to fostering learning for all people in all areas of study has provided a great environment for growth. You also couldn’t ask for a better college town!Something is always going on here, whether it be the annual Apple Festival, Wizarding Weekend, or just a day lounging at the Gorges. I have loved my time at Cornell and, as a junior, wish I could slow down time!

Nick Smith ’20

Economics; Business, Psychology and Leadership minor Hobbies and Interests: In my free time, I play for the Club Lacrosse team and run with the Cornell Running Club, for which I also serve as Public Relations chair (check us out on Instagram!). Around campus, I’m active in my own fraternity, the Interfraternity Council and the Meinig Family Cornell National Scholars leadership training program. I’ve also put my life-long love of the movies into practice by becoming a movie review writer for the Arts & Entertainment section of the Cornell Sun newspaper.

Why Cornell: Coming to Cornell has given me the opportunity to study what I love in a place that’s both profoundly different than where I’m from and at the same time familiar in some comforting ways. I’ve been able to hang on to my key extracurricular interests from high school with my involvement with the aforementioned sports clubs and start new journeys like writing opinion pieces for the newspaper and becoming involved in various sustainability efforts around campus, not to mention receiving instruction from some of the most capable professors on the planet in the classroom (many of whom had a hand in writing the textbooks from which they’re teaching!). Cornell is a place where I’ve made a more diverse group of friends than I ever thought possible and where I’ve seen myself grow in ways I could’ve never imagined.

Nile Jones ’20

Hobbies and Interests: Marching Band/Pep Band, Surgical Society, Society of Physics, Mathematics Club, CAS Pre-Professional Health Association

Rebecca Clark ’20

Asian Studies, Art History; East Asian Studies Minor Hobbies and Interests: As a member of the sport Taekwondo club team here at Cornell, I enjoy spending time both training and simply hanging out with my teammates. I’m also a student tour guide at the Johnson Museum of Art on Campus where I show guests around the museum and help out with various events at the museum.
Why Cornell: I feel as if there is no limit to what I’m able to study and the help I can get from fellow Cornell community members —faculty, staff, and students alike— in my academic pursuits. From researching the methods by which countries and organizations, such as the Japanese Ministry of Culture, seek to preserve important cultural properties, to looking toward the future and my hope to become a lawyer in cultural property law, I feel that there is always someone or some
organization that can provide me with assistance I need as I pursue my goals.

Renée Girard ’20

Government, Law and Society, Public Policy Hobbies and Interests: On campus, I’m a fellow of Pi Lambda Sigma (Cornell’s pre-government fraternity), the Society for Women in Politics, the Cornell International Affairs Society, and Cornell Best Buddies. I am also a passionate skier and enjoy exploring the Cornell Botanic Gardens with my friends!
Why Cornell: Cornell is unique in the way that it is both so large yet interconnected. Students have the ability to tailor their Cornell experience by exploring diverse courses, incomparable resources, and the great variety of student organizations available. Cornell’s size has allowed me to develop a multitude of networks that I will carry with me beyond my college experience.

Sarah Skinner ’21

English, Psychology Hobbies/Interests: I like to do a little bit of a lot of things, but most of my time is spent working for The Cornell Daily Sun, the independent paper that serves our campus. I’ll be an assistant news editor until the end of 2018, and I’ll be back again next year in another role. When I’m not at The Sun, I love attending English readings, talking about space, and (when I’m home) surfing and swimming in the ocean.

Why Cornell: It was different then how I grew up in every aspect, and I was aching for an adventure. I grew up in a little town on a barrier island, so small that it makes Ithaca look like a proper city. I chose Cornell because of the diversity of thought, experience, and goals among its students, and because I wanted to be challenged every day by something new that would help me learn and grow while getting the absolute most I could out of my educational experience. A great financial aid package, a super long winter break, and gorge walks every morning — just cherries on the cake.

Shoshana Swell ’20

Performing and Media Arts (Film Concentration), Information Science Hobbies and Interests: You can find me in the front row of a concert photographing a band, at a prison doing artwork with some inmates, swimming back in forth too many times in a pool, eating lots of Purity ice cream, or wearing lots of velvet. Oh so many places to find me.
Why Cornell:  I think of Cornell as an assortment of cheesecakes. So many options, all unique in flavor, and all yummy. My experience at Cornell has been that Oreo topping on a cheesecake. Everything you could ever imagine and more. The opportunities are endless. The laughs are endless. Whether I was in a language class, a film class, or a class about supernatural twins the content has blown my mind.*poof*

Sylvie Kuvin ’20

American Studies major; History and Art History minor Hobbies and Interests: In my free time, I enjoy reading and writing, and I’m involved with Slope Media.  I also love to explore Cornell’s beautiful campus and all that Ithaca has to offer with my friends.
Why Cornell: Cornell has the best of everything in one university. The opportunities for Cornell students are endless and I am constantly discovering new classes to take and interesting lectures or events to attend while on campus. Our campus is beautiful and there are always exciting activities going on in Ithaca as well. The people here are amazing, and I have learned so much from every individual I have met.  I’m so proud to be a part of such an incredible community!

Tait Stevenson ’20

Biological Sciences (Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Concentration) Hobbies and Interests: I love spending time outside and being in nature and with Cornell’s wealth of natural beauty there is ample opportunity to do so on campus! I also go camping or fishing any chance I get. Additionally, I enjoy playing a variety of sports and being physically active any way I can. On campus, I’m involved in a variety of service organizations, Greek life, and research.
Why Cornell: I applied to Cornell on a whim a few days before the January deadline as a senior in high school and knew nearly nothing about the school. When I visited Cornell for the first time during Cornell days in the spring and interacted with students here for the first time, I was swept away with how driven, fun, and interesting they all were. They all had such diverse interests, yet shared a common passion for learning. It was blatantly evident that they loved it here and it is this experience that ultimately swayed my decision to come to school here, across the country, instead of staying close to home in Washington state.

Taliyah Trueheart ’21

Performing and Media Arts, Psychology Hobbies and Interests: Here at Cornell, I have many opportunities outside of the classroom to engage with my various interests. Ithaca has a lot of great restaurants, and I love exploring the food scene with my friends. Being from Philadelphia, I am a huge sports fan and I help as a manager for the men’s basketball team. I am also involved with Thread Magazine and love to write and create my own independent projects!
Why Cornell: I didn’t know Cornell was the right place for me until I visited campus after my acceptance. It was such a welcoming environment, and I realized how well I would be able to thrive here and successfully complete the coursework for my two desired major disciplines of Film and Psychology. Cornell offers an unparalleled academic and social experience that I’m so thankful that I get to experience.

Victoria Watson ’21

 College Scholar Hobbies and Interests: Besides sharing my passion for Arts & Sciences with others,  I am part of a team in the Government Department researching International Security Assistance, as well as a member of the Kappa Alpha Theta Fraternity. In my spare time, I love attending events sponsored by the Judith Reppy Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies, running, and listening to BBC Arabic to practice my language skills.

Why Cornell: I chose the College of Arts and Sciences because I wanted flexibility with my education. I have always been intellectually curious about the world, and I knew I wouldn’t be able to take a plethora of courses in other schools without jeopardizing time for my major. I’ve wanted to take classes in an array of disciplines without spending my time in a lot of requirements, which was why Cornell was such a clear choice. Further, the departments I am interested in – Arabic, Government, Anthropology, and History – are particularly strong at Cornell, and I knew I wouldn’t have time in other schools to explore other disciplines while simultaneously taking on a challenging curriculum.

Vishal Sundaram ’21

Chemistry and Chemical Biology Hobbies and Interests: Outside of the classroom, I am the musical director of Tarana, Cornell’s only South Asian a cappella group, and I play the cello for fun in my spare time. As such, I have a great love for all things music (singing it, playing it, listening to it, talking about it, etc). I am also a part of a research lab on campus working to develop synthetic antibiotic alternatives. Some other hobbies of mine include hanging out with friends, playing basketball (with average success), and supporting my hometown professional sports teams (go Cavs/Indians/Browns!). 

Why Cornell: Besides the obvious appeal of its stellar reputation and academic rigor, Cornell offered me an opportunity for academic flexibility in an excellent learning environment. As the name implies, the College of Arts and Sciences lets me satisfy my appetite for the intricacies of chemistry, biology, and mathematics while broadening my present outlook and future prospects with offerings in such areas as foreign languages, music, economics, and government. A beautiful campus and a fantastic community of friends and peers make for a complete package that is both fulfilling and inspiring.

Yunyun Wang ’21

Government, Biological Engineering Hobbies and Interests: I enjoy using my engineering skills to maximize the time I spend in Zeus cafe, and listen to lots of NPR while sipping on iced chai. One of the most meaningful organizations I have been a part of here is Cornell University Bridges, a student-driven project team committed to building sustainable infrastructure in rural communities. In addition, I also serve on the University Hearing and Review Board and enjoy living out my SNL dreams by writing and performing in a sketch comedy group.

Why Cornell: My time here has truly been a formative experience. Not only did I venture out of a comfort zone I didn’t realize I had, but Cornell’s supportive learning community allowed me to combine my wide-ranging academic pursuits and gave me the courage to pursue a rather non-traditional career path. As a third year student, I still find myself learning more about this school everyday, whether it’s a new campus eating spot or a niche club that I’ll probably sign my net-id away to, and these small discoveries keep me charged up for my next find here at Cornell!

 

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