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Senior Wisdom: Bonnie Gillis

Our first senior wisdom of the weekend goes to Bonnie Gillis, a GS senior who drives a lovely red Vespa. 

Name, School, Major, Hometown: Bonnie Gillis, GS, Economic History, Tiawah, Oklahoma

Claim to fame: Drives a red Vespa

Where are you going? Staying in NYC where I’ve lived and worked for the past 10 years, and down the aisle in 2020

What are 3 things you learned at Columbia and would like to share with the Class of 2023?

1. Never conflate intelligence with integrity. A man of letters isn’t always a man of his word.
2. You may think buying the second cheapest bottle of wine is the best value, but they know you think that and it isn’t, so get the cheapest.
3. Learn to cook, it’ll be more useful than half of your classes.

“Back in my day…” We used Cubmail not Lionmail.

Favorite Columbia controversy? Nutellagate. I remember seeing “Columbia students stealing $5000 per week of Nutella” streaming on news marquees in Times Square and in taxi cabs. I was getting texts from out of state family about it.

Justify your existence in 30 words or fewer: No.

What was your favorite class at Columbia? Contemporary Civilization with Evan Neely because it was taught by a brilliant professor to a fantastic group of students who all genuinely tried to become friends with each other and was the only Columbia class I’ve ever had that was like that. It’s also where I met my fiancé, Scott. History of the City of New York with Kenneth Jackson who led a group of 200 students on an overnight bike ride from campus through lower Manhattan and across the Brooklyn Bridge at sunrise teaching us the history of the city along the way.

Would you rather give up oral sex or cheese? You guys are still asking this question? It’s 2019 and life is hard enough, enjoy both while you can.

Whom would you like to thank? I’d like to thank my good friend Sallie Mae, Steve for encouraging me to apply to Columbia, and my halal guy for feeding my belly and my ego.

One thing to do before graduating: Return my very overdue library books

Any regrets?: Sometimes I regret not moving closer to campus. My apartment is close to my office which is convenient, but if I lived in Morningside Heights I think I would have been more involved in campus life.

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