Serena Piol

The first Senior Wisdom of the day is Serena Piol, who wrote her thesis about milk despite being lactose-intolerant.

Name, Hometown, School: Serena Piol, New York City, Columbia College

Claim to fame? I would have to say either that I wrote my thesis about milk or that I successfully housed my dog in EC for a week.

Where are you going? For now, right back to the womb.

Three things you learned at Columbia:

  1. Don’t be afraid to quit.  College is too short to do something that makes you miserable.  No one is forcing you to do something for your entire four years.  Try it out. If you like it, continue.  If you don’t, at least you learned something (or didn’t) and you can move on.  This doesn’t just apply to clubs.  This applies to classes (it’s why we have a shopping period!) and people (meet lots but don’t waste your time on the ones that aren’t worth wasting time on).
  2. Don’t be afraid to be uncomfortable.  Do FemSex. Go to Take Back the Night.  Take a dance class. Go to ROOTed discussions. Do things like the What I Be project.  Embrace your vulnerability because you will grow from it.
  3. Use the time between classes.  Don’t underestimate the fact that you could write a page or two of your CC paper during that random 50 minute break you have.  That’s a page or two you wont have to write later and 50 more minutes of sleep.

Back in my day… JJ’s had microblasts, internet trolls had I See You Columbia and College ACB, and Senior Night was only for Seniors.

Justify your existence in 30 words or fewer: I was potty trained by 1 and haven’t since done anything to trump that.

Write a CU Admirers post to anyone or anything at Columbia: @femsex: you have changed and shaped me more than you will ever know

@theM2Mveggieburger: I just can’t quit you.

@MikeRady: your smile lights up EC 20.

Would you rather give up oral sex or cheese? I’m lactose intolerant, yet I wrote my thesis on milk and I eat cheese multiple times a day.

One thing to do before graduating: Make a list of all the events at Columbia that you want to go to and go to them all at least once.  Go all out all the time so you don’t feel like you’re missing out if you would rather go to bed than go to Senior Night.  Don’t pass up an opportunity in hopes of something better coming along.  Get the core over with by the end of sophomore year and take a random class P/F every semester.

Any regrets? I wish I were graduating with just a concentration (you can do that!) and had not wasted so many classes on major requirements that were miserable.  I wish I had gone to a lot of Columbia events before this year so that I could have gone to them more than once.  I wish I had applied to live in the IRC.  I wish I had joined FemSex earlier so I could have done it again and again.  I wish I had had the guts to join a peer advocacy group like Nightline or The Rape Crisis Center.