David Jansen

Englewood, New Jersey

I envision myself using the perspectives and insights gained from my studies and fellow students to develop imaginatively creative, emotionally intelligent, and captivating artistic creations that bring people of the world a little closer together.

Why did you choose Cornell and AAP?

Unlike other colleges, AAP will enable me to explore my artistic dreams. Here, I can challenge myself in a wide range of media as I earn my bachelor of fine arts. In addition to drawing, painting, and multimedia, I will become a serious student of photography, delve into printmaking, and finally attempt to sculpt a life-sized bust. Unlike independent art schools, where I would feel boxed in, Cornell will afford me the opportunity to intensively pursue my intellectual interests in psychology, East Asian studies — particularly the Chinese language — and the environment, all of which dovetail with my passion in the arts.

What inspired you to become an artist?

The way that people define themselves often changes over time. But if you ask me, I will say I am an artist. I always knew I was an artist and I will always be an artist. One of the most memorable moments of my life was the first time that I opened the enormous, ornate doors of the Art Students League of New York. At nine years old, I could barely believe the incredible energy I felt as I stepped inside. My eyes welled with tears. I was home at last.

What are your extracurricular interests and how have you incorporated them into your college life?

I am interested in international relations, especially East Asian studies and becoming fluent in the Mandarin language. Last summer, via a full federal scholarship, I studied Mandarin and lived with a host family in China for seven weeks. The artistry of the Chinese language and the history and etymology of characters enamors me. Also, I traveled to Japan as a student ambassador with a host family and look forward to spending a summer in Korea in the future. Additionally, I am committed to protecting the environment which led me to recently complete my high school internship at the United Nations with the World Information Transfer, a nongovernmental organization (NGO) promoting environmental literacy. Other hobbies of mine include skiing, biking, and swimming.

What do you hope to accomplish during your time at AAP and after graduation?

My university electives at Cornell — which will concentrate on psychology, East Asian culture with an emphasis on Mandarin language, along with studying fine art in Italy — will further stimulate and enable me to combine these intellectual interests in my artistry. Not only will I develop a truly indispensable knowledge of art practice, art history, and differing approaches to art, I envision myself using the perspectives and insights gained from my studies and fellow students to develop imaginatively creative, emotionally intelligent, and captivating artistic creations that build bridges and bring peoples of the world a little closer together.