Reflection on the G.O.A.L.S

G: Global Awareness

I have, to some degree, learned more about cultures around the world through my coursework in both history and literature as well as sociology. I have also interacted with students from other cultures around the country and world, which has furthered my understanding of other places and conventions. In the future, I hope to study abroad, and continue my interactions with others students and people from different parts of the world.

O: Original Inquiry

Perhaps the most I have learned about the research process has been from my Tutoring Writing class, where we discussed research processes, ethics, and write-ups, which culminated in a final research project of our own focusing on writing in some form. I have learned a fair amount about the publishing process as well from discussion in this class as well as the cultures surrounding different academic journals and academia in general. I hope to work as a research assistant in the future, and further this inquisitive process.

A: Academic Enrichment

In taking the courses I have in the major I have selected, I have furthered my understanding of how communicative technologies, both digital and analog, are created and can be used to convey stories and messages. By looking at the impacts of digital media,  I can better understand how we really may be facing a brave new world. By looking at professional writing through my minor, I can understand how communication can be essential in many aspects, and how being clear and concise is integral. Tying all this together with sociology and psychology GEs gives me a better understanding of the context in which all this communication occurs, and how culture and psychological tendencies affect the technology we use and vice versa.

L: Leadership Development

Over my first two years at OSU, I have become highly involved mainly in two organizations: Game Creation Club, of which I will be an officer next year, and Board to Death, the OSU board game club. In Game Creation Club, I have learned to work collaboratively with others to create a project and gain knowledge about what goes in to making a game. Next year, I will be in charge of maintaining the website, Discord server, and weekly e-mail newsletter, furthering my goals in learning effective communication as well as utilizing the full possibilities of digital technology. In Board to Death, I have helped to welcome new members to the club, and worked to help run “Mega-Games” with upwards of 40 people that last up to 12 hours. Both groups have taught me organizational skills and how to work with others effectively in team.

S: Service Engagement

I was fortunate enough to be involved with the Semester of Service program my second semester at OSU, where I volunteered weekly at a local food pantry in Columbus. I have also helped with the organization of events for different groups as a volunteer, and am looking to find more opportunities in the future, specifically regarding volunteer work around the issue of mental health and the stigma that surrounds it.

Final Reflection

Coming to college, I would have to admit I didn’t have any particular worries beyond deciding what on earth my major would be. Though this has been a rather large challenge, and continues to be, I have found that generally adjusting to a new environment and new expectations has been much harder than I originally anticipated. I have worked to try to make myself more comfortable with becoming involved in student activities and generally trying to be more conscious in talking to others.

I attended the lectures on the Social and Behavioral Sciences, the Natural and Mathematical Sciences, the John Glenn College of Public Affairs, the College of Social Work, and the Arts and Humanities. I generally chose these based off of some ideas I had of what I may be interested in, and many of these encapsulate looking at how people think and ways to help people, which are both things I am very interested in and may be interested in making a part of a possible career.

Overall, I largely am considering the same majors and a couple more (oops), and I’ll save time by not adding a laundry list of them here. Overall, the majors I am considering play into looking at cognition and generally looking at people to some degree, which I believe to be one of my strengths, specifically regarding empathy. With that said, I really don’t know what my future goals are at the moment beyond being employed and happy, so I can’t say which of my considered majors would be the best fit for me currently.

It was nice to get a better idea of the programs with the lectures, though some were more helpful than others. Overall, they helped to give a better sense of what the programs were beyond a page on the website. I do wish the lectures had covered more of the majors, as they oftentimes covered only a few, which is understandably a matter of limited time, but they did tend to be very focused on a few more popular majors rather than overall.

Overall, I would like to get a better idea of what I would like to major in, hopefully get it down to at least four or five possibilities. I plan to use the classes I am taking to explore majors further, and would like to visit the Career Counseling and Support Services to perhaps sort out a few of my ideas for possible majors and careers.

As far as advice to myself at the start of the semester: this is a going to be a completely new experience for you, and you’re not really ready for it yet. And that’s ok. You’re going to find being in this all new place with all new people overwhelming at first, and that’s ok too. It’s ok to not know what you want to do, and it’s ok to not know how to figure it out for now. This will all come with time. Just don’t forget to reach out for help when you need it, and don’t forget to have fun along the way.

An Informational Interview with Catherine Elliott

Why did you choose public affairs?

Catherine says, though she initially, “had nonprofit management as [her] minor,” she decided to make it her major because she, “enjoyed those classes more than [her] business major courses,” which was her initial major at OSU. She says also felt the college’s focus on “community and service,” aligned more with what she wanted to study.

What was your specialization and why did you choose it?

Catherine’s specialization within the Public Affairs major was nonprofit management. She knew she wanted to, “work hard for a specific cause,” and was not interested in working for the government, which was the focus of many of the other specializations at the time. She took, “one nonprofit class for [her] minor, and… loved it”.

What are you doing now that you have graduated?

Catherine is now, “working in finance at a bank… in Columbus,” more regarding her business minor. However, she would love to, “merge [her] interests in business and nonprofits in the future,” possibly in economic development or consulting.

What kinds of extracurricular opportunities did you have in public affairs?

Catherine took part in the Washington Academic Internship Program. She, “interned with two nonprofits in DC one summer,” while also taking classes and networking through the program.

What was it like working with the faculty in public affairs?

Catherine says the faculty were, “one of [her] favorites parts about being a public affairs major”. She says the professors were, “intelligent and passionate,” and that she really loved the professors she worked with.


I found Catherine through the senior bank on OSU’s website, and chose to interview due to my interest in Public Affairs as a major and her being a graduate of the program.

To be honest, This interview makes me think about what I really want from the major. Though I know I have an interest in working with nonprofit groups, I am not sure I would want to work with them in the capacity that the public affairs major trains its students for. I think I may be more interested in outreach than policy and organization.

I didn’t learn anything particularly unexpected from this interview, as I have done quite a bit of research into the different majors that have piqued my interest. Catherine’s answers reinforced my view of the college being very focused on the community and service, and about faculty that really cares about its students and programs.

I think it’s not so much any more that I need to learn about the program rather than what I need to figure out about myself, and if it would be a good fit for what I am interested in and what my skills are.

To be honest, watching the videos going over every major actually really helped me, since they gave a basic idea of what each major was. I have a tendency to fall into the trap of opportunity cost, worrying about what I would be missing by making a decision that closes the door on a different choice. This really allowed me to see what ALL of the options were, and to judge whether I would even want that other path.

College Transition Lecture Reflection

To be honest, I didn’t have all that many worries starting college before I got here, largely due to the fact that I was so preoccupied with choosing the “right” college that I didn’t leave myself much time for worrying about anything else. Now that I’m here, I’m really worried about myself more than anything. I’ve dealt with some problems with anxiety in the past, but I wasn’t really prepared for the surge of anxiety coming to an all new place with all new people would bring. So you could say that I’m worried about my worries.

With that said, I am certainly excited about all of the opportunities here. Being at a big university in a big city means a myriad of things to explore and get involved in, student-led on campus or in the greater city as a whole. Of course, meeting new people is also something to look forward to, going from a school of 2,000 to one of 50,000.

I have never been particularly good at detailing my strengths, but I like to think I am a rather decent writer and reader. I also have the ability to think very quickly and look at things in the bigger picture, though that does I mean I can at times look over the little details (chemistry was not fun).

Referring back to the myriad of opportunities at OSU, the number of student organizations is quite staggering. I have already attended a few meetings for clubs, such as the Ukulele Club and the Game Creation Club, and I might look into a few more. I also would like to volunteer when I have time, and maybe look into some research opportunities.

Unfortunately, I was unable to attend the lecture this Monday due to some health concerns, so I am unable to speak on what was said there.

About Me

My name is Esther Pittinger, a first year student at OSU. During high school, I was highly involved in the marching and concert bands and the creative writing club. Playing flute in marching band and having the opportunity to lead and learn from its members is an experience I wouldn’t give away for the world.

Year in Review

[ “Year in Review”  is where you should reflect on the past year and show how you have evolved as a person and as a student.  You may want to focus on your growth in a particular area (as a leader, scholar, researcher, etc.) or you may want to talk about your overall experience over the past year.  For more information, go to: Delete these instructions and add your own post.]


[ “G.O.A.L.S.” is a place where students write about how their planned, current, and future activities may fit into the Honors & Scholars G.O.A.L.S.: Global Awareness, Original Inquiry, Academic Enrichment, Leadership Development, and Service Engagement. For more information, go to: Delete these instructions and add your own post.

Global Awareness: Students cultivate and develop their appreciation for diversity and each individual’s unique differences. For example, consider course work, study abroad, involvement in cultural organizations or activities, etc .
Original Inquiry: Honors & Scholars students understand the research process by engaging in experiences ranging from in-class scholarly endeavors to creative inquiry projects to independent experiences with top researchers across campus and in the global community. For example, consider research, creative productions or performances, advanced course work, etc.
Academic Enrichment: Honors & Scholars students pursue academic excellence through rigorous curricular experiences beyond the university norm both in and out of the classroom.
Leadership Development: Honors & Scholars students develop leadership skills that can be demonstrated in the classroom, in the community, in their co-curricular activities, and in their future roles in society.
Service Engagement: Honors & Scholars students commit to service to the community.]



Sycamore High School                               August 2013 – May 2017

  • Graduated Summa Cum Laude with 4.3 GPA
  • Member of National Honor Society, Marching, Concert, and Pep Band, Creative Writing Club

Work Experience

Kings Island Amusement Park: Food Associate                                         June 2017 – August 2017

6300 Kings Island Drive, Kings Island, OH 45034

Contact: 513-754-5700

  • Prepared, served, and sold food to hundreds of people daily in a fast environment.
  • Worked with others to achieve an optimum customer service experience for guests, and worked directly with guests giving directions, answering questions, and reconciling problems with previous service.
  • Received training with registers, preparing and serving food, handling money, and customer service.

General Experience


  • Worked directly with crafters and other volunteers delivering food and moving products throughout the Sycamore High School Craft Show.
  • Helped set up stage between musical groups during the Sycamore High School Pancake Day event.
  • Worked with others to set up and tear down multiple school-affiliated events efficiently.


  • General Manager of Marching Band: organized work crews and work crew leaders to get everything set up and taken down for rehearsals and ready for competitions.
  • Section Leader of Flute Section: helped to instill unity within the section and teach and maintain marching and playing techniques throughout the season and made sure everyone was comfortable within the section and band as whole.
  • President of Creative Writing Club: organized making and distribution of school-wide literary magazine as well as fundraising and club events and preparing activities for weekly meetings.


  • Excels in fast-paced environments
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Caring, considerate, and respectful style of interaction
  • Good with kids


James Blankenship

Sofia Feist



This is a photo I took for my Introduction to Photography course I took my senior year of high school. This isn’t actually the fully edited photo, but it is the base photo I used for the class and for my AP Studio Drawing class as a basis for a painting. Though I like to think I have an eye for visual aesthetics, photography really was the ultimate test of that, and I worked to capture as best I could places important to me, such as this little nook in a park I loved back home.