Emery Bergmann

Montclair, New Jersey

I was so excited to attend a school like Cornell because the more I diversify my learning, the more I can draw on for inspiration and see a project from a variety of perspectives.

Why did you choose Cornell and AAP?

After doing a pre-college program at Rhode Island School of Design, I knew that art was my passion. I decided if I didn't pursue a career in a creative industry, I would regret it. But I hesitated to attend an art school as I worried that I would have to sacrifice all the other subjects I enjoyed throughout high school. I applied to art programs around the country that were part of a greater network of education. What attracted me to Cornell was not only the gorgeous campus but how many different areas of learning the institution offers. I knew my art would only benefit by diversifying my learning. At Cornell, I could take full advantage of the wonderful art program, while simultaneously exploring other subjects. I also now have the opportunity to meet people in many different majors. I can learn from my peers, and partake in all sorts of extracurricular activities. I receive all the benefits of attending a smaller art school, as well as the exciting experience of being at a large university.

What experiences have contributed to your sense of belonging at AAP?

My transition into college was kind of hard. I came to school not knowing a lot of people, and making those initial connections was pretty difficult for me. I was taking Introduction to Digital Media my first semester, and one of the assignments was to make a video about a transformation. I created a video about my feelings regarding my college transition and posted it on YouTube for the class to critique. To my surprise, it went viral, and students from all around the country contacted me, explaining how they feel similarly. Upperclassmen, adults, grandparents, a whole range of people reached out claiming how they at some point in their life had gone through the same experience. Students throughout Cornell contacted me, offering to get lunch sometime. Club sports teams encouraged me to join, and faculty reached out asking how they could help first-years feel more comfortable. These simple acts helped me understand what a community it is here at Cornell, and that I was surrounded by people who really care.

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

I love the outdoors, so I took part in a pre-orientation trip with the Cornell Outdoor Odyssey program. This summer I am going to be leading a trip as a guide! I'm a huge music buff, so I also am a part of Cornell Concert Commission, a club which organizes entire concerts with influential musicians. It's such a cool club to be a part of (and sometimes you even get to meet the artists!).

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

I hope to take advantage of the vast network of people and opportunities Cornell has to offer so I can get some hands-on experience in different fields, as well as prepare myself for life after school. I also would love to get more involved on campus, whether by providing artistic assistance or simply taking part in some of the many organizations and clubs. My dream job is to be an art director, whether it be in movies, video games, or any creative field whatsoever. Of course, it's not a simple feat, but simply the possibility of working with a big team of creatives, surrounded by those ready to make something beautiful, just gets my blood pumping! I was so excited to attend a school like Cornell because the more I diversify my learning, the more I can draw on for inspiration and see a project from a variety of perspectives. I will be better equipped as a creative thinker, and bring more than just artistic advice to the table.