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Learning How to Think

Ke Zhou

Ke Zhou '09, Attorney

What is the most valuable thing you learned at Dickinson?

"Perhaps the most valuable thing that Dickinson taught me, overall, is to explore, Dickinson taught me how to think. The most valuable part of my experience is that my education was very intimate and personal. In fact, I made friends with all my professors and keep in touch with almost all of them to this day."

How have the relationships you forged at Dickinson affected lour life?

"My relationships at Dickinson have had a great impact on where I am now, my new course in life, and where my destiny will take me. It was my senior roommate who said to me, ‘Harry, you would make a good lawyer.' It seemed like just a whim, but the idea stuck, and I’m very grateful, because it all happened so quickly."

How has your interdisciplinary liberal-arts education shaped the way you think?

"I am an integral thinker, with a very systematic approach, very analytical, and these are my strengths. I was both an economics and a computer science major, two very unrelated fields. Which is rare to have such unrelated majors. I didn’t think I could manage a double major, but my professor said, yes, I believe you can, and he sat down with me and mapped out a plan and figured out the course work and made it all possible.

"You see, there are areas where these two disciplines overlap, and I approach solutions to problems from a programming point of view, and it really works for me. And so I had some overlapping classes, and oh, my -- my senior year, I don’t know how I got through it.  It took some courage, but everyone was so supportive, even when there seemed to be no possibility I could handle both. I was prepared to just have a minor, but the double major worked best for me and I accomplished it with the help of everyone at Dickinson."

How has Dickinson prepared you for your move into a new field?

"I will be going into the banking industry in New York soon, which you know is characterized by vast volumes of regulations—networks of regulations. Dickinson taught me to be comfortable with and handle large volumes of information.  That was the most useful skill I learned at Dickinson, and will be invaluable to me, moving forward."

What advice would you give to incoming first-year students?

"I would say, enjoy your time at Dickinson to the fullest.  You will someday realize that every bit of it will enrich your life greatly; one day you will see how very useful every part of your Dickinson experience is, for the rest of your life."

Published October 25, 2012