'I hope my work gives women tools to confront sexism'

Grace Tian

New York, N.Y.

What was your favorite class and why?

My favorite class was Introductory to Narrative Writing. I knew I was interested in creative writing, but before I took that class I always self-identified as more of a poet. I really loved the freedom that I felt poetry gave me, especially in reference to structure. However, this class taught me to appreciate those same traits in narrative form; I found a different kind of freedom in building characters and plot lines, and was able to adopt a narrative writing style that allowed me part of the varying structure of poetry. I ended up taking Advanced Narrative Writing the next semester, and I'll always be glad that I initially took that first course.

What is your main extracurricular activity and why is it important to you?

I work as a laboratory manager and a research assistant in the Person and Context Laboratory at

person walking by ocean

Cornell, a psychology lab under Professor Vivian Zayas. I joined research in my sophomore year because I've always been incredibly curious, and I was drawn to research because it offered me the chance to satisfy that curiosity through hands-on methods. Currently, I'm working on my honors thesis, which is regarding the confrontation of sexism and potential consequences for confronters. I hope the work will give women tools to confront sexism both safely and effectively, and will also bring awareness to the ever-present glass ceiling for women, despite the work of the past decades.

What Cornell memory do you treasure the most?

In my freshman year, the COVID-19 pandemic sent us all home in the middle of spring semester. After we received the news that we were to leave the dorms and that classes were on hiatus, my friends and I took some time to process together and consider our next steps. We went to one of the dining halls on North Campus and just talked about our fears for the semester, where we might be heading and how we would keep in contact; we ended up staying so late that we all slept on the floor of my friend's single dorm. Everyone was incredibly supportive, even though we were in completely different positions, and I thought it was really remarkable that we were able to come together and be there for one another in such a stressful time.

What have you accomplished as a Cornell student that you are most proud of, either inside the classroom or otherwise?

In my sophomore and junior years at Cornell, I've put up two albums of music on Spotify, and

person crouching with lots of foliage around her

am planning to release a third after graduation. I've loved applying the skills that I've learned in writing classes here, and exploring some of the stories of the people that I've met through music, and I plan on continuing to pursue music as a hobby. At Cornell, I've been part of two separate research labs, one in nutrition and one in psychology, and that research has given me a greater sense of both how we are similar, but also how we differ and why those differences are critical to acknowledge and appreciate. I've especially liked diving into both the physical and psychological aspects of this, which my research has given me the opportunity to do.


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		Grace Tian