A Fall Day at the Brooks School

Blog Post

Alexandra headshot. Alexandra G.

Hello! I'm Alexandra (Alex), a sophomore from Cortland, New York. I am a student at the Cornell Jeb E. Brooks School of Public Policy. Welcome as I recap a fall Wednesday, where I'll walk you through my morning routine to some of my classes to how I wind down as a Cornellian. 

Let's get started.

9:50 AM | Walk to Class 

I leave about 20 minutes before marketing class to grab a matcha latte and bagel from my favorite breakfast spot, Bus Stop Bagels. I live at the bottom of the slope in Keeton house and always enjoy my morning workout walking up the slope. 

10:10–11:25 AM | AEM 2400 (Marketing for non-Dyson majors) 

I am working towards a business minor, and my marketing class with Professor Yang is a fun elective that counts toward the minor. Brooks School students have many overlapping classes with the business minor already, so it is very easy to achieve. Through this class, I’ve met students from across the university and I always have a place to sit with friends. I have 15–30 minutes between each class today, but they're not far, so I can enjoy the fresh air while walking with friends. 

11:40 AM–12:55 PM | FSAD 3200 (Global Textile and Apparel Sustainability) 

My second class is in Martha Van Rensselaer (MVR) Hall (home to the Brooks School!) and is a course I chose to take for fun. It has helped me significantly understand the textile industry and how consumers and producers can succeed in reaching the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals. I can apply what I learn in this class to environmental policy and workers' rights policy. 

1:25–2:40 PM | PUBPOL 2040 (Economics of the Public Sector) 

This class is in the same building as last, so I have 30 minutes to do readings or send a few emails. I have PUBPOL 2040 with Professor Tripp, an Intermediate Microeconomics professor. Everyone in the class is a Brooks School student. PUBPOL 2040 has helped me meet more upper-level students, and Professor Tripp is always very approachable and welcoming during office hours. This class helped me to find a passion for economics and business. 

After class, I can never resist stopping by Martha's Cafe to customize a salad bowl before GOVT 1111. I always order ahead so I am on time. Many Brooks School classes are in or around MVR, so my classmates and I hang out in the MVR Commons after classes most days to work on homework together or grab lunch from Martha's. 

2:50–4:10 PM | GOVT 1111 (Introduction to American Government and Politics) 

This is my last class of the day and one I thoroughly enjoy. GOVT 1111 is a requirement for my major, but it is shared with students from all over Cornell. It is a nice break from the norm because Professor Mettler requires students to take handwritten notes on paper, which leads to further engagement and is a nice rest from screen time. I always enjoy the smaller discussion sections for this class, which are 50-minute slots once a week to discuss class material, ask questions, and get to know classmates. This class allows you to explore your own political identity and offers ways to get involved in the community. I plan to do Cornell in Washington over the summer, and GOVT 1111 has helped me prepare. 

4:10–6:30 PM | Rest time, homework time, or office hours 

After a busy day, I either go back to Keeton House to do work and relax or attend office hours. Office hours are time slots held by professors and teaching assistants (TAs). Office hours allow students to ask questions about lectures, upcoming assignments, and exams and are a great way to meet upper-level students in the major for future advice. 

6:30 PM | Dinner at Keeton House 

The best part about living in Keeton is having a dining hall directly below me. All the dining halls offer a wide variety of food, and dinner is a great time to meet up with friends. Keeton has a once-a-week themed menu called "House Dinner." My favorite dinner thus far has been blueberry salmon, mashed potato, broccoli, chai tea, and apple cider donut night. 

7:30 PM | Uris Library 

Every student has a go-to study spot, and mine is Uris Library. I love the quiet study spots, tables for friend groups, and the “Cocktail lounge” (a study area, no cocktails in sight!). It is also right on central campus, so it's only a 10-minute walk from my dorm. I always go with friends because we motivate each other and reduce stress. I usually choose large libraries with quiet study spots for exam studying. I am okay with working in the dorm or Keeton House library if I have smaller homework assignments. 

9:30–10:30 PM | Workout 

Once we finish studying, I'll return to my dorm to change and head to Noyes Recreation Center. I always prioritize catching a workout, even if it's just walking on the treadmill. Noyes is right on West Campus for sophomores to enjoy. 

11:30 PM | Bedtime 

Once I am ready for bed, I'll hang out with my friends in our building before we all try to go to sleep around midnight. Since today was a full day of classes, I’m prepared for the next day when I only have one (PUBPOL 2101—Statistics for Public Policy).