Congratulations, Pallavi Juneja '15!
Haverford students have a number of established resources, like the OAR, that they draw upon to help them succeed personally and academically. However, perhaps the most powerful resource available sometimes goes untapped or underutilized: Haverford students have VIP access to the wealth of knowledge and experience that exists within the Haverford community. The OAR's Straight from the Source initiative encourages students to not only utilize established resources, but also to embrace the knowledge and experience of their professors and peers, to get information "straight from the source."
As part of this initiative, OAR intern Josh Bucheister '14 spearheaded the creation of the inaugural OAR Essay Contest. The essay prompt asked rising seniors to consider their learning experiences at Haverford and offer advice to their fellow 'Fords.
Reflecting on the essence of the academic experience at Haverford, contest winner Pallavi Juneja '15 writes, "We aren't here to learn writing or science or math, exclusively; rather, we are here for a liberal arts education - to learn how to think." Read Pallavi's winning essay in its entirety here.
Three runners-up also submitted insightful essays.
In her humorous yet thoughtful piece, Carolyn Poutasse '15 introduces readers to Chet the Marmoset, a stuffed monkey who lives in the Chemistry Department, and describes how personal relationships with her Haverford professors have had a profound impact on her development "as a student and as a scientist."
Jack Hasler '15 reflects on the importance of class participation and the various ways Haverford students can show their commitment to bringing their best to a course. Sitting in a Calculus II class during his freshman year, Jack saw that participation counted for 10% of his grade and wondered, "How often could I be expected to speak up during an hour long lecture among 90 of my peers?" You can find out how Jack learned to participate in this class by reading his essay.
A final essay, written by an anonymous rising senior, describes the importance of balance. "Learn to say no, but also learn to say yes," she writes.
Information about the 2015 OAR Essay Contest will be available in the spring.