Hannah DelSordo ’22 (international studies, French) is passionate about the environment, policy, international relations and social justice, and she enjoys branching outside of her comfort zone, both inside and outside of class. Learn about her intriguing pandemic hobby, the externship that piqued her interest in policymaking and more.
Clubs and organizations:
Eco-Reps and The Square.
On choosing Dickinson:
I decided to attend Dickinson because I was looking for a school with a strong international studies department, and one that encourages students to study abroad and believes that environmental issues are important. I was excited to know there were opportunities for students to participate in groups such as the Eco-Reps without having to be a person majoring in environmental studies. I knew I wanted to attend a liberal-arts college, and I enjoyed the small community that Dickinson had when I went on a tour in high school. On the tour, I felt like I related a lot to the tour guide, and that made me even more excited to apply.
Favorite place on campus:
Favorite Dining Hall food:
One of my favorite learning experiences was in my Environmental Hazards class taught by Assistant Professor of Earth Sciences Jorden Hayes. This was my first experience taking a lab course in order to fulfill a graduation requirement, and the class overall was incredibly enjoyable. For one lab, we went to the local park in order to measure the stream flows. It was so much fun to put on the waders and get in the water. It ended up being an amusing lab because many of us got soaked in order to fill out the lab questions. This was definitely my favorite learning experience because it was such a change from what I was used to in my other courses.
During the pandemic, I have become increasingly crafty. My latest projects are tiny rooms that I make out of tissue boxes. I make small furniture and paint it to look like rooms in my house.
About my internship:
I had the opportunity to take part in an externship my sophomore year with DeBrunner and Associates, which is a consulting and advocacy firm that advocates for rights in relation to governmental healthcare programs. I was interested in this externship because I was eager to learn more about the ins and outs of the policymaking program. Through this experience, I was able to understand the specific steps taken in passing bills, specifically the ventilator care bill. Since this experience, my interest in working in policymaking and nonprofits has grown, and this past summer I was an intern for the Borgen Project. The Borgen Project is an organization focused on policy that reduces global poverty. Although this experience was entirely remote, I was able to reach out to local representatives and advocate for increasing the foreign-aid budget. I have learned a lot about activism and outreach and what it takes to make a change.
Best thing about my Dickinson experience:
Learning in an environment where students are passionate about their fields of study. I think it is a very special thing that Dickinson brings in students that have diverse interests and people will take classes outside of their specific major for fun. I end up learning about things outside my field of study because everyone is so excited about what they are learning, and they are eager to share. The community of students is very welcoming which contributes to this studious and inspiring atmosphere.
If I could have dinner with anyone, living or dead, it would be …
… Meryl Streep.
Most important thing I’ve learned so far:
Branch out from your comfort zone. Luckily, this is very easy to do at Dickinson, as there are so many options for students. As a first-year, I was very eager to join clubs and decided to try fencing. This was something I had never before had the opportunity to try, and it was super fascinating to learn about. After learning a bit about the rules, techniques and types of swords, I got to put on the gear and give it a go. I don’t think I was terrible, but there was definitely a learning curve to it. I met a lot of cool people I would not have met without fencing, and it taught me to take chances when it comes to trying new things.
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Published April 9, 2021