Latin and Me

Describe two or three of your current intellectual interests and why they are exciting to you. Why will Cornell's College of Arts and Sciences be the right environment in which to pursue your interests? (Please limit your response to 650 words.)

Four years of Latin have taught me several truths: the great Julius Caesar’s writings are unexpectedly boring; almost all novels derive from The Aeneid; and most people see no value in a ‘dead’ language. Despite these apparent drawbacks, Latin has inspired my ravenous appetite for knowledge. Prior to high school, I was academically insecure due to a learning disability. I always worked harder than my peers to master the same topics. However, when I started Latin in 9th grade, I was finally equal to my peers: we were Tabula Rasa. While I enjoyed my first few years of Latin, it was not until I started reading ancient texts that I truly fell in love with the language.

It is a challenge to explain Latin to those who have not taken it, but it is the most mesmerizing language with each word carefully chosen to convey a particular mood. When I tell people that I want to pursue Classics in college, there is usually a blank stare followed by a lecture on why I should choose a more relevant major. There is not a more applicable subject than Classics, especially since I want to attend Cornell's College of Arts and Sciences. The idea of a “College of Arts and Science” was founded by Ancient Romans who believed that education was the key to...

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