Doug Kronaizl

Got wisdom? Luckily, senior Doug Kronaizl does. We enlisted him to give us our daily dose of all that is wise in today’s senior wisdom. 

Name, School, Major, Hometown: Doug Kronaizl, Vermillion, SD, Columbia College, History

Claim to fame: Grand Poobah, Music Director, and resident Mariah Carey of the Columbia Kingsmen. I’m also a member of the elite 0.1% of Columbia students hailing from the Great State of South Dakota. If we’ve met, odds are I’ve told you a thing or two about the Rushmore State and you damn well better have enjoyed it.

Where are you going? Heading back to SoDak to head up political committee aiming to put an initiated constitutional amendment on the ballot in 2016. Did you know that last November, South Dakotans went out to the polls and, with a 55% majority, approved a law raising the minimum wage to $8.50? Democracy at work! When asked if he thought the Legislature would amend that law and re-lower the wage, our governor admitted that “would be a little bit of an affront to the voters who just adopted it” and then proceeded to redefine “affront” in order to affront the voters right in their collective face. I know you are all as incensed about this as I am so if you want to sign a petition to protect initiated measures in SD become a resident and hmu.

What are 3 things you learned at Columbia and would like to share with the Class of 2019?

1. Don’t hate on Lerner; embrace Lerner. Just know that the sooner you internalize that message, the sooner you will be truly at peace with yourself. Elevators are abysmally slow, the ramps are the ramps, and then there’s that damn turnstile at the Broadway entrance. Those features aside, here are some tips to ensure the best possible Lerner experience. Find the interior stairwells – they are your friends. Unless you have a scooter, they will get you where you need to go faster than any ramp ever could. Enjoy the amenities! Lerner piano rooms on the 5th floor that, if you’re lucky, you can claim all to yourself? Computer labs x 2? A dining hall? Not to mention the bubble tea. That’s all within a single building. MEGA PRO TIP. Envision this scene: it’s crunchtime and you need a quiet space to do some reading. Lerner Cinema is the place to be. The room is full of comfy seats and it’s always empty. Slight downside, laptoppers, the entire space is outlet-less.

2. Take part in a small, tight-knit student group. En route from South Dakota in 2011, there were only two other people from my entire state in the Class of 2015. Entering NYC without knowing a single person can be terrifying and it was. Living so far from home definitely wore on me. But fortunately I joined the Kingsmen during my first week. Evening rehearsals, cool performances, roadtrips, all of these things and more ensured that I had some group I was a part of. Additionally, it introduced me to a group of students I could relate to. Making the transition campus can be tough, but having a small, focused group dynamic helps. Still, this is a plug as much as it is an answer to the question.

3. Save a buck and utilize the Digital Humanities Center on the 3rd Floor of Butler. Professor expecting you to buy an entire book even though they only assign a single chapter for a single class? Save your hard-earned cash for things the really matter like Chipotle and Chipotle. Go to Butler, look that book up, enter the Stacks, find the book, take it to the DHC, scan the chapter as your own PDF. And if you have any questions, the DHC staff is one of the most helpful on this campus. Top-notch stuff.

“Back in my day…” John Jay didn’t have Wifi, which was pretty annoying.

Justify your existence in 30 words or fewer: I had a lisp back in elementary school. Whenever we would play Pokémon I’d say “Ash” but it would come out as “ass.” The teachers thought I was swearing so they made me sit by the wall for, like, three recesses in a row. I know that’s more than 30 words, but if there’s one thing I learned from that ordeal it’s to fight the power; even when you play by The Man’s rules, you can still get burned. #realtalktho

What was your favorite class at Columbia? Ancient History of Mesopotamia and Asia Minor with Professor Marc Van De Mieroop. There is only one professor on this campus who can talk about bevel-rimmed bowls and make it genuinely interesting. Maybe it’s the accent, maybe the gestures. Whatever the reason, take any courses with him that you can.

Would you rather give up oral sex or cheese? Giving up cheese might not be in my best interest if I’m heading back to SD. I don’t think you could last more than three days before starving to death if you tried.

One thing to do before graduating: I tried going to Hewitt once during NSOP with my roommate and our friend, the Caboose, but we were given a number of terrible directions and ended up in a foyer area trapped for an hour by a locked door, an alarm-wired emergency exit, and an uncallable elevator. Needless to say, I was traumatized. After we were rescued by a kind passerby I never returned. Maybe it’s time to face my fears.

Any regrets? I didn’t go see Herman Cain speak when he was on campus back in 2012 and that’s always really bummed me out. Granted, I had to decide between hearing him or going to see the Titanic re-release in IMAX 3D, which was pretty cool don’t get me wrong. It’s just, was it the right choice?