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Taylor Udell, Infosci Undergrad

Affiliation: Information Science and Psychology

Hometown: Coronado, CA

Why did you choose Cornell?

I chose Cornell because I wanted a school that offered a wide variety of disciplines, as well as a challenging academic environment. It was really important to me to be able to explore majors before I pursued a course of study, and because of the esteemed faculty I knew that whatever path I chose I would be receiving a great education. I also wanted to live in a place that was a completely different environment from where I’d grown up.

Where are you from?

I am from a small beach town/island off of San Diego, CA. The population is roughly the size of the undergraduate and undergraduate student population, here at Cornell.

Why are you majoring in InfoSci? What is your concentration?

I chose InfoSci for two main reasons. First, I really like the interdisciplinary approach to technology. Because technology plays such a large role in so many aspects of our lives, it’s important to understand its social, cultural and individual impacts as well as understanding information technology itself. Secondly, I like how what I learn provides me with a skill set and is extremely applicable to the world we live in. With technology playing an increasingly large role in the way everything works from business to healthcare to education, the InfoSci major helps to develop skills that can shape the way new technologies are implemented and developed. My concentrations are Human-Centered Systems and Information Systems.

What research projects are you working on?

I do research in the Behavioral Analysis of Beginning Years (B.A.B.Y.) Lab. Although not exactly related to InfoSci I study vocal development and learning in infants, focusing mainly on how social interaction plays a role in development.

Is there a particular faculty member in InfoSci who has influenced your educational experience?

Both Professor Kline and Professor Williamson have been favorite professors of mine. Both gave me insights into very different aspects of Information Science. Professor Kline is a great lecturer and showed that the way a technology can be used isn’t obvious from the start, and Professor Williamson explained the math behind it all well. They both are great teachers and really care about their students learning the material.

What other activities are you involved in around campus or around Ithaca?

As I mentioned above, I do research in the B.A.B.Y. Lab. I am also involved with YOURS, I’m a teaching assistant for Networks and I will be a T.A. for INFO 2300 next semester. I am also in Pi Beta Phi.

What do you like about living in Ithaca?

I love the diversity of Ithaca. It's a really interesting place to live because there are so many different types of people. It is also a beautiful place to live. The gorges through campus are great, not to mention the state parks. Fall also has to be one of the best seasons (something I never really experienced in southern California). However, one of my favorite parts of Ithaca is the food. The farmers market is amazing, as is Chilifest, Applefest, and all of the restaurants!

What would you recommend about this program to potential students who are thinking about majoring in InfoSci?

InfoSci is great because it is something that is relevant to your life. The odds are that you will have a professor whose research is extremely applicable to a technology that you use every day or maybe even created it.

Have you done any InfoSci related internships or projects with companies?

This past summer I worked as a web development intern for Barrel, a digital agency in New York City. My courses prepared me very well for this experience, and gave me a solid foundation to build on.