Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Ok, so I don't mean to scare any of you, but just a friendly reminder that applications are DUE: JANUARY 1, 2011.

On a lighter note, I wanted to share with you all a letter that was recently written on behalf of current Pitzer Student, Michael Landsman P'12 :

A little sagehen tells me you've started to fill out your application to Pitzer but have yet to press "submit." I know senior year is busy and the college process is strangely both the most stressful and protracted experience one faces in school. In fact, I finished most of my applications on New Year's Eve! However, on the first day of that winter break I had a small panic attack while watching Juno with a friend, using my iPhone to confirm that I had indeed sent in my Pitzer app.

My freak-out was for good reason because three years later I know applying to Pitzer was one of the better decisions in my life! Pitzer might not be for everyone, but those of us here deeply love this place. You can feel it when picking figs and oranges from our garden with friends after class, when rolling down the mounds from laughter at a midmorning conversation, or grooving to homespun music on the porch of the Grove House.

However, Pitzer is more than fun and games (although we have plenty of bike polo and hoops in our year-round sunshine), it provides one of the most unique, and important, educational programs around. Today's problems and tomorrow's solutions don't divide themselves neatly into disciplinary boundaries so neither do our courses. At Pitzer, "interdisciplinary" means studying genetics with a historian and a neuroscientist, assessing the environment through politics and poetry and discussing race relations through film.

In today's global society one must be able to think across cultures, so Pitzer strives for diversity in all aspects. We get to study African politics with a professor who fled Sudan and learn about gang culture from life-long Los Angeles activists. Through Pitzer study abroad, we can explore Nepali terrestrial radio and intern with a local pundit or complete biology courses at our health clinic in Costa Rica.

Pitzer is a strong community because social responsibility is at our core. Beyond the confines of campus, Pitzer students have long-standing partnerships with local non-profits and constantly develop creative new ways to improve our shared experience. On campus, students usher changes to reduce dining hall waste, design new sustainable residence halls and even hire and promote professors. Here, students take part in governance - so we have a real voice. Of course there are other ways to give back such as working in the bike shop, helping plan spring's Kohoutek Music and Arts Festival or whipping up burritos at the student-run Shakedown Café.

Perhaps the best part of Pitzer is simply the freedom to be who you are. I'm continually fascinated and inspired by the myriad personalities who live and learn here. Pitzer teaches you that to achieve happiness and success, the best formula to follow is your own. If you are still reading this letter, at least some of this description has probably tickled your fancy. Now remember, you can't take advantage of all this great stuff unless you apply, so press "submit" for Cecil's sake!


Michael Landsman
Pitzer College

Class of 2012

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