'Instead of fearing change, I look forward to it '

Julia Dinmore

Biology & Society, Spanish
Skillman, N.J.

What are the most valuable skills you gained from your Arts & Sciences education?

My Arts & Sciences education taught me how to analyze and collaborate. My humanities classes pushed me to dig beneath the surface of texts and other pieces of art to uncover the substance beneath, while my STEM classes encouraged me to work in groups and appreciate the power of collaboration. Both of these skills have served me well in each of my classes, and I also employ them each and every day — sometimes without even realizing it. 

What was your favorite class and why?

My favorite class was Environmental Governance taught by Professor Wolf. Taking it in the fall semester of my senior year, I was eager for a healthy challenge that would push me to expand my worldview. Environmental Governance did exactly that, introducing me to concepts that I had never before considered and demonstrating the interconnectedness that exists within everything. This class also consisted of a group project that tested my collaboration skills and showed me just how valuable a diverse team can be; each person contributed something essential to the project and helped me learn more about the class content but also about what it means to work as a team. 

What Cornell memory do you treasure the most?

My most treasured Cornell memory is my entire semester abroad in Sevilla, Spain. I stepped far out of my comfort zone and discovered a resilience and adaptability in myself that I wasn't sure I had. I made incredible friends and memories, but, most importantly, I found a sense of independence. 

What have you accomplished as a Cornell student that you are most proud of, either inside the classroom or otherwise?

girl skiing

I am proud of myself for having a piece published in a scientific journal. I would hear about peers achieving such accomplishments and figured that I would never do something like that — I  just didn't think that I was smart enough. When my Environmental Ethics professor reached out to a few students about submitting our final project work to be published, I realized that I am more capable than I had imagined. It inspired me to have faith in myself and pursue goals no matter how distant they may appear. 

How have your beliefs or perspectives changed since you first arrived at Cornell? What have you discovered about yourself?

Transitioning from high school to Cornell, I was intimidated by the abundance and magnitude of change that I faced. Rather than accepting this change and running with it, I recoiled. Over the years, however, I have found the beauty in change. It no longer intimidates me; rather, change comforts me. I like knowing that the world is ever-shifting, life is ever-changing, and we are ever-evolving. In redefining my relationship with change, I discovered my adaptability. Now, instead of fearing change, I look forward to it because I know that whatever comes my way, I can adapt and grow along the way. 

Every year, our faculty nominate graduating Arts & Sciences students to be featured as part of our Extraordinary Journeys series. Read more about the Class of 2021.

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