March 3, 2010

Laura Stamp ’12

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Is one the loneliest number?No, not always. I think zero is probably lonelier  — it’s a complete absence there. That’s pretty lonely!

Have you ever gotten in trouble for something inconsequential in school? I was home-schooled for almost my entire life, so it was kind of hard to NOT get in trouble with my parents [about] certain [things]. I had siblings around — I come from a big family, there are eight kids in my family. It definitely made the dynamics of waking up and going to school very interesting. I was the best in class and worst [at the same time].  We had a set schedule and stuff like that, so even though we all were in different grades, we were competitive sometimes [with each other]. But, mainly it was one-on-one kind of work, which means I was competing with myself.

Has that made Cornell, and the switch to competing with thousands of other students, particularly shocking?I really don’t feel that much of a difference, because I was very involved with the local high school [in my area] — I ran track for them. I took classes with local co-ops, which means other home schooled families were coming together and we would have different teachers. My mom wasn’t always teaching me — a lot of the time she wasn’t.But I feel like it wasn’t that much of a difference coming to Cornell and having to “compete academically” be­cause I wasn’t socially de­prived or anything. I was definitely around other people all the time.

Some have said “cellar door” is a particularly appealing phrase, aesthetically speaking. What word in the English language do you like the most?“Adventure” is a good word. Maybe the connotation of “adventure” is just joyful, I dunno. I guess something that sounds very content — like “joyful” [itself.] Or  “dazzle,” or “dew­drops.” “Cellar” reminds me of celery though, so I don’t get a positive connotation from that.

We are seeing some sibling duos in the Winter Olympics, like an Israeli brother-sister figure skating duo. Would you ever do anything professional with a sibling?

I don’t see why not. I think if anything, it’d be such a growing experience, because you have all this background together, and can relate so well. You’d be able to understand why [your partner] does what they do. There may be some more fights involved, but then you just grow more [together when you resolve them]. Sib­lings are just great — they’re built-in best friends!