Thursday, July 15, 2010

What An Eventful Day!

Today in class we had our last guest speaker: Chris Riano. I think Dr. Z saved the best for last because he was the most entertaining and exciting BY FAR! He also had a very unconventional college experience. He began telling us his story of how he went to Carnegie Mellon to be an engineer, left school and came to New York where he worked as a model and traveled the world (seriously, google him)! Then he came back to school at Columbia where he was a part of the school’s Senate and sat on the Board with the likes of President Bollinger and CEOs of big companies. After graduating he went to law school in a small town and worked as a student prosecutor. In a few weeks he’ll take his BAR and begin working as a judicial law clerk in Baltimore. His life adventures are endless; he even worked as a “spy” for government agencies! How cool! He also talked to us about our papers and our college options. After visiting over 60 schools he knows a bit about the options available.

What I got from our talk with Chris and our other guest speakers was that no matter where I end up attending school (prestigious, ivy, or not), I’m the one who has to make the most of it. Also, there is no direct path to success or starting a career. I think I’ve been persuaded to take a year off before graduate school to work or have my own Riano adventure. He had such an exciting life where he took whatever was thrown at him and if it wasn’t, he went out to get it. Really inspiring.

During lunch today there was a college fair in Lerner Hall with 100 colleges and universities from all across the nation. I had really interesting conversations with Occidental, Pomona, American, George Washington, Brown and Davidson. Overall, it was both informative and hectic because there were so many people.

During our afternoon class I worked earnestly on my paper to find last-minute quotes, edit and perfect it. After working so hard the past two weeks, I was done by 5 pm. I’m so relieved that I’m not bending over backwards still working on it now! Oh my.

In celebration of finishing my paper and having some free time, my friend and I went to see the Museum of Art and Design at Columbus Circle. They had an exhibit on jewelry from all around the world and I cannot believe how heavy some of the earrings look! Surprisingly enough, I found some jewelry from the Mien culture (my culture). There was also a display of different man-made bicycles of all different colors, materials and designs. One of the coolest exhibits they had was called “Dead or Alive” where they had things that were once living but now dead in art form. Some of it was really weird, like the pile of mice bones, while some of it….well it was all weird.

Some pictures I took before they told me cameras weren't allowed

I can’t believe that tomorrow is really our last day of class! Even in these past couple of days I’ve really changed how I think about my future and what I want.


  1. Michelle,

    As you suggested, I Googled Chris Riano. There wasn’t as much about him as I would have liked but when I checked out the photos there was no question that he sure was ‘purty’. I can see why he could make a living as a model.

    I would hope, Michelle, that all of you smart kids might learn from you. How many of our ILC students were admonished about snapping photos in the museums? There are usually signs and even pictograms for those too busy to read the signs. In some countries you’d be calling a consulate emissary at this point.

    Feels good to have the paper done, doesn’t it? Now you just have to figure out how not to second guess yourself on it. You need to figure out how not to wake up in a sweat wondering if you should have used a different quote or reference. You have to keep from wondering if your prime suppositions were correct. That’s the tough part, Michelle.

    Good luck, though.

    If you’d care to share with us, feel free to email a copy our way.

  2. Michelle,

    One more thing: when I Googled Chris, your blog came up as the #10 reference on the list so now future Googlers of Chris will read the rave reviews you gave him. Did you negotiate any kind of fee for the public relations work you did for him?