'The International Student Union was a critical part of my Cornell experience'

Angela Pan

Government, China & Asia Pacific Studies
Beijing, China

What was your favorite class and why?

My favorite class was environmental governance, which is an interdisciplinary study of natural

woman holding basket of apples

resources and governance. This class gave me the chance to explore my interests in the intersection of environmental policy and Asia studies. I enjoyed putting together the final group research project where we conducted interviews with stakeholders and scholars who worked on sustainable rubber supply chains in Indonesia. The process of designing and conducting interviews was really stimulating and showed me how to conduct an independent research project.

What Cornell memory do you treasure the most?

Being a member of the International Student Union was a critical part of my Cornell experience. My Cornell experience started with the international student orientation where I met a lot of international student union members. They welcomed me to Cornell and helped me to feel like I belong here. Later on, as a part of the publicity team and the advocacy team, we launched an online campaign to showcase intangible cultural heritage around the world from the hometowns of Cornell international students. I learned so much about cultural heritage and how they form a part of our identity. Being a part of ISU also helped me feel connected to my peers and Cornell during COVID when I could not come to Ithaca for my entire sophomore year.

woman holding colorful leaves

How have your beliefs or perspectives changed since you first arrived at Cornell?

I discovered that everyone has a different path. Before arriving at Cornell, I had a notion of a strict timeline of where I should be at during each year of college, but then I discovered that there are many different paths and possibilities that you will discover along the way. I realized that it is important to be open to new possibilities and follow my curiosity.

What are your plans for next year?

I am staying in Ithaca and attending Cornell Law School for the next two years. I am in the three plus three pathway program, which allows me to jumpstart my law career a year early by finishing my undergraduate studies in three years. I am excited to continue my journey in Ithaca!


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		Angela Pan