Washington Square News

What Led Me Here

By Marie Kessel, Contributing Writer

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When I first began the college application process, I thought I wanted to escape New York. I thought I would be happier if I were as far away from everything as possible, somewhere completely unfamiliar where no one would know me. I had no real idea of what I wanted to do with my life.

In August 2016, I went on a tour of NYU’s campus, where I learned about The Gallatin School of Individualized Study. I’ve known for a while that I’m interested in pursuing law; however, my choice never seemed completely right. I’ve been drawing since I was three, and art has always been one of my passions. I thought that I would have to let go of art if I wanted to have a serious career someday. Learning about Gallatin completely shifted my perspective: I learned that I actually can have my cake and eat it too. Gallatin, above any other school, allows me to pursue all of my passions. I love the idea of creating my own major and building my own career. I plan to take the LSAT someday, but I’m centering many of my classes around art history and philosophy, two subjects I am fascinated by. For the first time, I’ve had complete freedom in picking classes, and I look forward to school like never before.

Originally, I believed that I was tired of New York City as a whole. Walking through Washington Square Park and seeing the hodgepodge of people, passion and excitement floating around me showed me that this definitely wasn’t the case. I was just tired of monotony, whether it was not being able to pick my high school classes or following the same routine every day. Manhattan and NYU are the opposite of this. I love how NYU is smack-dab in the middle of the city, giving perfect exposure to the different art museums and galleries of New York. I can see myself sketching at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, listening to jazz in Washington Square Park and studying at the epic Bobst Library. I want to go to every museum, read new books and learn about new authors and about what inspired them.

One of my goals for college includes trying new things whenever I can. Recently, I’ve begun to realize that being brave doesn’t mean to not have any fears, but rather to push through those fears despite the risk of failing. Even if I’m still not completely sure what I want to do with my life, NYU gives me the opportunities, freedom and exposure that no other college can match. This, combined with the diverse and friendly atmosphere, is why I cannot picture myself at any other college.

Opinions expressed on the editorial pages are not necessarily those of WSN, and our publication of opinions is not an endorsement of them.

A version of this appeared in the Tuesday, Sep. 5 print edition. Email Cara Zambrano at [email protected]

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