Clara Liao: 'I found a great role model in an upperclass researcher.'

Tue, 04/25/2017

Clara Liao

Biological Sciences

Los Angeles, CA

What is your main extracurricular activity? Why is it important to you?

I've been competitively figure skating since I was 8 years old. I've trained in this sport for most of my life, but joining the Cornell Figure Skating Club has been an entirely new experience and made me fall in love with the sport in a completely different way. It has allowed me to develop incredible friendships and use skating as a stress-relieving, energizing form of exercise.

What was your most profound turning point while at Cornell?

I'm an English minor and I took an expository writing course my sophomore year. I happened to be in a seminar filled with upperclass students of various majors. They all wrote such sharp, well-written pieces and drove the class to have the most stimulating, passionate discussions. That was when I truly appreciated most being at a school where I could find a class that made me so excited to discuss literature in a room filled with random economics, chemistry and industrial and labor relations majors.

Who or what influenced your Cornell education the most? How or why?

When I was a freshman, completely lost and unclear about what direction I wanted to take for my biology major, I found a great role model in an undergraduate researcher who was an upperclassman at the time. His dedication to his lab and and passion for research inspired me to find a neurobiology lab for myself, in which I would dedicate my focus. He showed me how cool research is and inspired me to pursue it as a career.

Clara Liao