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Student Snapshot: Lucille Papile ’21

“Luckily for me, Dickinson offers the definition of a liberal-arts education. I’m supported in following both my passions.” Meet Lucy Papile ’21, a neuroscience major and creative writer who plans a career in wilderness therapy.

Lucille Papile ’21  

When Lucille Papile ’21 (neuroscience) arrived on campus last year, she was already a published student writer. Her essay “The Lost Explorer” was included in the Connecticut Student Writers Series and her poem “Fireworks” was part of an amateur poet collection, A Celebration of Poets (Creative Communications). During her first year on campus, she took an introductory creative writing class, and she’s now enrolled in a screenwriting course, with plans to minor in creative writing with a major in neuroscience. She’s also working on a book of poems for young teens.

Hometown:

Granby, Connecticut.

Major:  

Neuroscience.

Clubs and organizations:  

Pi Beta Phi Sorority, Club Soccer, Dickinson College Republicans, Neuroscience Club, Alpha Lambda Delta, WILD (leader) and Outing Club.

Honors/scholarships/awards: 

Dean’s List, Alpha Lambda Delta and Benjamin H. and Portia T. Hosler Scholarship.

Dickinson in one sentence:

A place where diversity and difference cultivate friendships. 

Favorite book:

Life of Pi by Yann Martel.

Favorite movie:

Across the Universe. 

How I define “useful” (as in "useful education"):

When I think of the word “useful” in terms of education, I think of an experience that is applicable on a large scale. At Dickinson, every class I’ve attended has given me knowledge that can be applied to the real world, which is hard to say about some of the courses I have taken in the past. Whether it be a class on the nervous system or a creative writing workshop, I have been able to make global connections. In addition, Dickinson offers learning opportunities outside the classroom, including wilderness experience trips and cultural immersions that exemplify a well-rounded, useful education.  

Favorite place on campus:

The “fishbowl” in the library.

Favorite Dining Hall food:

Fish tacos.

Favorite learning experience:

My favorite learning experience was going through recruitment for Greek Life. Although this experience did not take place in a classroom, I learned enough to last me a lifetime. I was able to push my social skills and make new friends. I learned what it meant to have someone by your side, an unconditional friend, and I would not trade that for the world. 

As I kid, I wanted to be … 

… a marine biologist. Then I realized you have to know how to swim for that. 

My little-known hobby/talent:  

I’m classically trained in opera.

On publishing a book during high school:

Throughout elementary school, I had a passion for writing creatively. I would sneakily read ahead in books during class and reveal the ending to my friends at recess. I loved literary discussions for the beauty of the writing. I realized that writing is a form of art, and I wanted to take part in it. In sixth grade, I found my muse. The boy I liked did not like me back, and in return, I spilled words onto a page, using my pencil as my tool. I stuck with my love for writing all through high school, where I was fortunate enough to have my work published. As I started my college search, I feared that my love for writing would be muted as I entered a science field. Luckily for me, Dickinson offers the definition of a liberal-arts education. I’m supported in following both my passions, realizing sacrifices do not have to be made to ensure my happiness. 

Most important thing I’ve learned so far:    

The most important thing I’ve learned so far is to push my boundaries and do feats that scare me. I know this is cliché, but the only way to make a college experience truly worthwhile is by going at it headfirst and achieving things you never thought possible. 

Post-Dickinson plans:  

I plan to attend graduate school at Boston University School of Medicine, where I will study to become a neurologist. With this education, I will study and better the growing field of wilderness therapy, which combines both my love of nature and the inner workings of the brain. 

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Published September 17, 2019