At Penn, There Are No Limits

Creativity is everything to me. In high school, I found my academics deprived of creative agency—I just stuck to the textbooks, to put it simply. I valued my academics, but I also wanted to integrate creative aspects into the curriculum. But, I never quite found a way to go about doing that. Without even knowing it, I was suffocating. Then, I came to Penn. I truly didn’t know what I was missing. Creativity courses through the heart of this school. I’m taking classes where you are encouraged to make something of your own to be proud of. My preconceived notion of academics was completely altered, in the best way possible, when I first went to a class here. I was learning things that I wanted to learn with professors who valued crazy ideas and original opinions. 

I’m surrounded by creative people who unabashedly express that creativity through various mediums. I’m constantly awestruck by the level of vision that exists in each person at this university. There are people starting their own business, social initiatives, cinema clubs, musical groups; there are talented people creating things all around me. I’m not going to lie to you, sometimes this sort of climate can get intimidating and tiresome. It can be hard to keep up with the pace at which my peers function. However, more than anything, my idea of what is possible has been exponentially heightened. Here at Penn, I can hash ideas out with fellow creatives and make something beautiful. 

I can sit in a room with cool people and turn a creative concept into reality. Creativity is everything to me, and some of the things that I always wanted to do in high school I’ve accomplished in college. At Penn, there are no limits. What I learned: collaboration is at the center of creativity. If you come to Penn, you are guaranteed to find amazing people who value the same things as you do. For me, that was creativity, but whatever you are looking for, I guarantee that there will be a community of students here to back you up.

-Karis S. '18

When You Want to Pursue Everything

What do you want to do when you grow up? I've been asked this countless times growing up, and honestly, I've changed my mind on who I am and who I want to be so many times, it's hard to think of a time when I knew everything I wanted. And then I realized, it's okay if you don't. You don't need to have everything figured out to move forward; I am a living example of that. Growing up, I always wanted to become a veterinarian. I came into college with all my plans to work with exotic animals abroad  for several years before and settling down and starting a small clinic back at home. Then everything changed.

We come into college being told there are countless classes, majors, and opportunities there will be, but it's not until we get there, fully immersed in the culture, that we truly understand and appreciate the vast world that stands before us. Realizing how much more was out there and how much I hadn't tried or even considered, I really didn't know what I wanted anymore. So I tried it all. I took marketing classes, geology classes, statistics classes, computer science classes, classical literature classes, south asian studies classes. I took all of them and more, and after everything was said and done I was even more confused with the path I wanted to take. But that's what college is all about.

It's about trial and error. It's about living and loving and learning. After venturing into some higher level classes of my favorite "experimental" subjects, I chose to pursue research and development. It's still in the sciences, but it's far from the Dr. Dolittle that I always thought I would be. 

Penn is certainly not only a place where you can pursue and achieve your dreams, but also a place that let's you discover them.

-Kelli L. '17