And We’re Off!

Hey everyone!

I figure now’s as good a time as ever to introduce myself–I’m David Schatz, an incoming freshman to Cornell in the College of Arts and Sciences. This blog, Candid at Cornell, is a part of Life on the Hill: The Cornell student blogging project. As a jovial accepted student back in April, I was poking around the Cornell website and saw that there were openings for new bloggers to narrate their Cornell experiences. I remembered having read many other students’ Cornell blogs when I was looking at many colleges, and thought that they helped me to get an accurate glimpse into life at Cornell …so I figured, why not return the favor?!

So…what do I hope to accomplish?

  • Prospective Cornellians- I was in your shoes less than a year ago, and I remember being flooded with all sorts of messages from colleges: letters, e-mails, even phone calls. I remember all the college visits–such as the 5 hour long road trips, seeing how many liberal arts colleges in central Pennsylvania I could pack into one weekend. To be honest, I had NO CLUE for the longest time what I wanted in a college. I looked at huge state schools, small private colleges, the liberal arts education vs. a business-centered one, etc. I always walked away from campuses with the “yeah…I guess I could see myself here” kind of attitude, and it didn’t help me narrow down my list at all. What I realized is that, while the information sessions and campus tours were nice, what bugged me was that they didn’t always give a full picture of the school. I mean, I can understand why–what kind of admissions officer would start off a speech to parents talking about their ranking as the #3 party school? Or what kind of tour guide would tell students about the grueling coursework, unapproachable professors and hindered social life of students at their institution? That’s what I’m here for. I’ll regularly narrate many details about my life as a Cornellian–both the good and the not-so-good. Hopefully, the information that I provide will help you to make the best choice regarding where you’ll be spending the next 4 years of your life.
  • Cornellians (both past and present)- I hope you’ll be able to read this blog very similarly to how you would read a good book–it’s just something casual that you’d be able to pick up every now and then that you’d might find interesting or amusing, and that you could certainly relate to. Feel free to stop by every now and then to see what I’m up to or to see what one lowly freshman among 13,000 students (is that number right?) is thinking.
  • Everyone else-I’m going to try as best as I can to portray what life truly is like “on the hill” at Cornell, a vast, incredible place to study. Especially in light of the tragedies that took place on campus this year, where some peoples’ perceptions of Cornell could be…distorted, if you will, by the news coverage–I think that it is more important than ever to showcase what a phenomenal place Cornell is, and I’m glad that you’ll be able to view it through my eyes.

This blog is definitely a work in progress, and I’m still playing around with different logistics like the settings and format. That said, I’d certainly love feedback, comments, suggestions, questions, or anything of the like; feel free to comment on posts or catch me on Facebook. Really–send me whatever you’re thinking and I’ll reply sooner than later.

Thanks for coming along for the ride!!

3 thoughts on “And We’re Off!

  1. Dennis Shiraev

    Switch to the 10 meal per week plan right away. Unless you have some weird schedule where you end up eating lunch on North Campus every day, there’s no way you’ll eat more than 10 times per week in the dining hall. You’ll save a lot of money, which can then be used towards Big Red Bucks if you happen to run out of those.

    Dissuade your friends, too. 14 meals per week is not horrible, but don’t let anyone get the unlimited plan. Tell them to switch right away. I’ve never known a single person who eats more than 14 times per week in a dining hall. It’s a big Cornell scam to fool unsuspecting freshmen.

  2. Barbara Bai

    Hey David, it’s exciting to be reading a new Life on the Hill blog! I know it is kind of weird for a Cornell junior to still be reading admissions blogs, but honestly I feel it is pretty hard to know what life is like at different colleges, and even life for students at the same college (if all the students at Cornell could be said to be at the same college!). So I’ll be lurking here throughout the year.

    I agree with Dennis about the on-campus meal plans – it’s a general consensus that the 10 buffet meals/week is sufficient. Though I do have some friends who employ some luxuries with the 14+ meals like eat a meal at one dining hall because they have better dinner food and on the way home pick up cookies at another dining hall, or since they lived in a residence hall with dining (Risley) going into the dining hall to pick up food and eat/hoard it in their room multiple times throughout the day (bringing more than one food item out of a dining hall is strictly against the rules but the idiosyncrasies of house residents are often tolerated). Some things you do just because you can.

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