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Hip Hop

Hip Hop


Favorite Part: Feeling like a beginner again. Even with years of dance training, I often feel like I’m starting from scratch and learning to move my body all over again.

Best Adventure: Taking hip hop classes in Amsterdam and Tokyo. I don’t speak Dutch or Japanese, so I was learning dance through dance alone.

Hardest Part: Building up my shoulder muscles! I had to learn to dance with my shoulders instead of holding them in ballet’s steady “swan’s neck” position, with the shoulder blades drawn down the back.

During my conservatory training in ballet, I avoided hip hop classes at all costs. The strange, loose style didn’t make sense to me because ballet has an absolute “ideal” toward which all dancers are striving. I didn’t understand the underpinnings of the dance form and it intimidated me for years.

It wasn’t until I took a break from dance during graduate school that I learned to appreciate the freedom of improvised and stylized dance. I went into my first real hip hop class with an open mind and absolutely loved it.

The Process

Getting to know hip hop was like learning a new language—not only did I need to learn new words, but I had … Read More »

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Machine Embroidery











Machine Embroidery


Favorite Part: Having complete control over every stitch and reaping the rewards of getting a design exactly right.

Biggest Lesson Learned: Pick your fabric carefully and buy plenty of it. Even straightforward designs need to be stitched out at least four times.

Preferred Subject Matter: Animals. Fur, scales, and skin at once lend themselves to and defy the limits of thread and fabric.

Machine embroidery is symbolic of many things in my life: a marriage of creativity and practicality. I enjoy both the limitless possibilities of drawing with thread and the immediate, precise execution of my sewing machine. I get to explore until something feels right, then capture that design and replicate it again and again.

Imagining each design comes easily, but translating the idea into programmed stitches is an ongoing challenge. Learning to program machine embroidery designs is a great lesson in following through on creative vision, even within strict technical constraints. For each stitch the designer must not only decide where a stitch begins and ends but how the machine stitches it, with what thread tension, and … Read More »

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The Art of Innovation

This is the excerpt.

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The Ring Entrance

This is the excerpt.

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BR Consulting





BR Consulting

Director of Business Development: 2012–2013
Consultant: 2011–2012

Favorite Part: Meeting many local business owners and having candid conversations about the decisions and hurdles they face.

Biggest Lesson Learned: When I first considered the Business Development Role, I was concerned I might be a poor fit for sales. I was pleased to realize that I am excellent at conversations, from which the best sales pitches are indistinguishable.

Hardest Part: Trying to maintain and improve upon on our predecessor Directors’ systems while learning how to run the firm and work as a team. It felt like taking over someone else’s start-up with no idea what the business produced and no employees.

BR Consulting is a student-run management consulting firm that helps local small to mid-sized businesses profile strategic options, explore investments, and organize to implement solutions. At the same time, BRC provides valuable consulting experience to Johnson students interested in improving their problem solving skills.

As the Director of Business Development, I began conversations with over 30 potential clients, from which I ultimately developed 11 engagements. I evaluated each client’s fit with our educational objectives, scoped out right-sized projects, and transitioned the engagement to the client’s new team. One of my objectives as … Read More »

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No Restraints on the Roller Coaster

This is the excerpt.

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Acara Challenge

Street Food Problem Identification – Sparklers






Acara Challenge


Favorite part: Collaborating with our Indian teammates and getting to hear and see our customers thousands of miles away in photos and video interviews.

Hardest part: Getting a true answer for how much users would pay for the service during surveys.

Biggest revelation: Realizing street food vendors are employing their children, as young as 5, to wash dishes behind their stall: a significant barrier to adoption of our service.

During the Creative Design for Affordability class at Cornell, I teamed up with three Cornell-based students, and five Mumbai-based students (at the Somaiya Institute of Management Studies and Research) to enter a proposal for the Acara Challenge. Our task was to design an entrepreneurial and sustainable product or service to address food security in India. Our team developed a dish and utensil washing service for street food vendors that used municipal water access and Tata’s Swach filters to provide clean water for a small fee. Our proposed business employs local women as part-time dishwashers, rickshaw drivers for dish transport, and provides a sanitation certification program for participating vendors.

The Process

I really enjoyed the opportunity to work within the … Read More »

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Aerial Dance






Aerial Dance


Favorite Role: When I was Master of Ceremonies, I dressed as an flight attendant to welcome the audience and remind them to fasten their seat belts for an evening in flight. When exiting the stage, I placed an oxygen mask over the nose and mouth of one of the other performers.

Hardest Part: At the beginning of each class, we climbed to the top of the fabric twice, about 18 feet in the air. For the first few weeks, this exercise left me with noodle arms for the rest of the evening.

I decided to try Aerial Dance shortly after making the leap into Modern Dance from Ballet. It was a fantastic learning experience for me, because I got to start all over. Hanging in the air on a cloth is a completely foreign experience and I had to learn all the basic rules of locomotion over again. Instead of just contending with gravity, which is a far more powerful force once you leave the ground, I also had to stay mindful of friction and the need to be constantly anchored to the fabric. With these new constraints, I was clumsy, … Read More »

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