Nancy Stanley

Email: n.stanley@berlin.bard.edu

Where are you from and which program are you enrolled in at Bard College Berlin?

I’m from Colorado in the United States of America and I am enrolled in the Humanities, The Arts and Social Thought program.    

What drew you to Bard College Berlin and why did you ultimately decide to enrol as a student?

Bard College Berlin puzzled me at first; it seemed like the polar opposite of what I expected from my college experience - small crowd, huge city. But as I did my research, I began to understand that the college would provide a unique experience just because of this. Both the campus, as well as its surroundings are very beautiful, which adds an interesting edge to the whole experience. Meeting so many students from around the world was something I was hoping for after high school, but I didn't expect to delve so deeply into learning about how cultures differ and how the things we are taught can change the way we think. The faculty is so open, too. Getting to know my teachers while sitting at the lunch table with them and hearing about their achievements is very uplifting. I could have gone to a huge American school, taken a generic major, and hoped for the best, but here I am surrounded by a group of people who want to do the same things that I want to do with my life, have worked hard, and are focused on gaining an international perspective. That's why I chose Bard College Berlin.  

What do you like about campus life at Bard College Berlin?

Campus life is even better than what I expected from college. The dorms are huge, artistic, accommodating, window-filled, and inspiring. The gardens all around contribute positively to the campus experience. As for the cafeteria, I applaud the cooks! The food is some of the best food I have had, and the quality is much better than what I expected to find at a college!    

What do you enjoy about living in Berlin?

Living in Berlin makes me think differently. Coming from a place where I have to drive 15 minutes just to get close to town, this is a new experience! The campus is not too secluded - I feel comfortable, but being in Pankow still feels like you’re in the city of Berlin. Public transport is so accessible and close that it’s no problem to go further into the city. There's always something beautiful to see -  there are so many forests, gardens, open cafes, and things of the like to explore that I often don't feel homesick at all.  

Write briefly about a text you've read for one of your courses that's left a lasting impression on you.

"You must make errors, and recognize them, if you are going to extend such knowledge as you have" is one of my favorite Bernard Williams quotes from the “Truth in Action” class. Personally, it's easy for me to relate the texts we read back to myself which is, in my opinion, one of the most important ways of making progress at this school: I want to understand the academic context of the material, but find some meaning in it that matters to myself. That's what college is all about.

How do you think the education you receive at Bard College Berlin will help you in the future? What does a liberal arts education mean to you?

I think Bard College Berlin, and a liberal arts education in general will provide me with a basis to develop in my career; you can't grow until you don’t understand the basics of thinking, understanding, and predicting, and until you don’t look at the texts we read here, such as classic literature, philosophy, etc.