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Cornell University School of Continuing Education and Summer Sessions

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Student blogs


Princeton, NJ
Body, Mind, and Health
Summer College 2014
Hello Summer Cornellians! My name is Rooble and I just finished my junior year at West Windsor-Plainsboro High School North in Plainsboro, New Jersey. I'm actively involved in school sports and clubs. I was on my high school's basketball team for two years, but this year, I decided instead to coach younger students and to dedicate more time to my academics. I've also been involved in my school's debate and Red Cross clubs and am president of my school's JSA chapter. My other endeavors have included raising money for the surgeries of polio inflicted children in India. I'm really looking forward to the Body, Mind, and Health program and hope I will gather enough knowledge and experiences to help me make a career decision for the future. Summer College is just a couple of weeks away and I can't wait to have the best summer of my life!

The first week at Summer College was exciting, stressful, but still quite memorable. Before going in, I was relatively nervous about the class as it called for a lot of work. However, as soon as I attended the first lecture from Professor Joan Jacobs Brumberg I felt a bit better. Professor Brumberg is warm, kind, and overall such an intelligent individual. Although she calmed our nerves on the first day, that didn't decrease the amount of work we had to do. We ended up finishing the first assigned book and also wrote our first paper. I can tell you that all of my friends and I had long and busy nights. Besides the workload, one aspect of the first week that was the most unforgettable was the multitude of friendships I have gained. This experience would have been quite difficult without having people to talk to, but I'm glad that this was not the case!

Apart from studying, my friends and I engaged in some of the fun activities Cornell has to offer. This past weekend, we decided to explore more of Ithaca and took a bus to the downtown area where we walked around and ate some Greek and Italian food. For the most part, the weather has been beautiful and we've spent a lot of time outside playing basketball and Frisbee as well as just plopping down under a shady tree and reading our books. Other fun activities included a highlighter dance party and an "ice-breaker" mixer. These events allowed me to meet new people and served as a great way to relax after a stressful week at Cornell.

I'm really looking forward to the second week of class, as I now know how to manage my time here properly. The workload may seem overwhelming, but I'm sure I'll be able to manage. In addition I am looking forward to the interesting presentation by Dr. Marguerite Uphoff who will be speaking about pediatric medicine and its change over the course of the last century. I hope the lecture will be informative and allow me to get an idea of what a doctor's occupation entails. This past week has taught me that even though it's difficult to get A's in Cornell classes, you have the opportunity to learn what you're capable of and your overall intellect.

I can't wait to see what the second week of Summer College has in store for me!


Two weeks ago I entered a magical place that allowed me to broaden my viewpoints on medicine, make lasting friendships, and enjoy the sunny, warm weather while studying under a tree. As I near the end of my stay here at Cornell, I have no words to describe the magnificent aura of Cornell University. I've learned a lot here, whether it be through reading insightful books about AIDS and Anorexia Nervosa, or through watching informative documentaries about polio and tuberculosis. The Body, Mind, and Health course has allowed me to attain a new perspective about medicine, and view disease from biological, psychological, and social standpoints. Though there was a lot coursework, I felt strengthened by the ambience and encouraged by friends around me to work through it all.

Working with my Teaching Assistant also improved my overall knowledge of the requirements of a college course and the transition between high school and college level writing. Our course concluded with a final research paper that asked us to choose a disease from a list Professor Brumberg aggregated. I chose Alzheimer's disease since I know relatives who have been diagnosed and because I've always been inquisitive about the cause or etiology of the disease.

Besides the coursework, I'm sure the friendships I have made are going to be long lasting. The people here are so warm and kind. Cornell offers a diverse environment to its students; it's quite fascinating to see people from different parts of the globe with similar mindsets coming to study the same courses as you. It shows that even though we are all separated by geographical boundaries, education is one thing that unites us. I know it sounds cheesy, but it's absolutely true.

I'll see you guys later!


As I remain enclosed within four walls back home in New Jersey, I look out the window to see a quiet, and lifeless neighborhood. A couple weeks ago I was living in my version of paradise—a place so alive and full of warmth. I sit here thinking about my inexplicable experience every day; thoughts ranging from my class to enjoying lunch with friends at RPCC, and even those late nights spent studying fill my mind. I can unequivocally say that these were the best three weeks of my life.

The Body, Mind, and Health course introduced me to sides of medicine I never knew were important to curing a disease. Prior to the session, my approach to medicine was very single-minded, I strictly looked at it from a biological standpoint, unaware of the depth needed to truly resolve a disease. Going into the course, I was tentative on choosing a career as a doctor, but now I know that there is no other path I would enjoy as much. Professor Brumberg highlighted in her discourses how essential it was for a doctor to be a "human," in other words a person who can sympathize with others and set up a personal relationship with each patient. This important piece of advice will serve as a model for me to become the successful doctor I yearn to be.

Another aspect of life that Cornell has reinforced in me is to take a step back to realize and appreciate my surroundings. On most days on my way back from class I would go to Cornell's famous clock tower to look around and enjoy the serenity and scenic view ahead of me. I realized that all of us become so embroiled in our busy lifestyle that we forget to just chill and reflect, and most importantly be thankful for what we have the opportunity of doing. I think these three weeks have been quite life-changing for me, I've discovered my true interests and the type of person I want to grow to become. I've made great friendships, and most of all confirmed my belief that this is the place where I soon want to be.

It has been a great pleasure to be a Summer College blogger and be able to share my experience with everyone!

I can't wait to see where life takes me in my quest to become a doctor!