Ujjesa Dhanak ’19: Make your voice heard
Many of my favorite Cornell memories come from time spent working with devoted students, faculty, and staff to improve Cornell for future students.
I’m grateful for the opportunities I had to make my voice heard on many committees. On a subcommittee of the Diversity Committee, I watched faculty and staff members use their free time doing extensive research and drafting proposals to diversify the curriculum—something students have been requesting for decades. When I was at Cornell, there was a course on the history of baseball, but no courses in the history department that focused on African or Asian history.
It was inspiring and motivating to see the level of care and effort Cornell faculty and staff are willing to put in for students, regardless of the outcomes. In the ’60s, students had to take over Old Sem to make their voices heard, and even then it took decades to have most of their demands met. Progress has clearly been made. I hope it continues, and I hope that Cornell students will have more opportunities to have their voices heard in the ways that I did—to truly have a say in the things that impact them as Cornell continues to grow to meet its students’ needs.