I declared independence from the norm at Drexel

Cooperative Education, Student Life, Study Abroad

I chose Drexel initially because of its Design & Merchandising program; it is dynamic, interdisciplinary, and offers co-op with some of the biggest brands in the world. I came here with the hope of including courses from other disciplines into my curriculum and maybe the chance of fulfilling my dream of studying abroad in Japan, but I had no idea that I would make all of this happen and more through the Custom-Designed major program.

After I met a Custom-Designed student in a minor course, I reached a pivotal moment that made me realize I didn’t have to limit myself to a traditional program where Drexel dictated my coursework

After years of personally working on environmental issues, I took up a minor in Sustainability in the Built Environment, which was Drexel’s only option to study sustainability at the time. While the philosophies of D&M and Sustainability were at odds with each other, I continued with my unique major/minor combination. However, after I met a Custom-Designed student in a minor course, I reached a pivotal moment that made me realize I didn’t have to limit myself to a traditional program where Drexel dictated my coursework. I made a case for myself in the Custom-Designed program with a highly interdisciplinary plan of study that primarily included environmental policy, product design, and supply chain management. There seemed to be parallels between my old major and new; I took the product development and global sourcing aspects of D&M and combined them with my new interests to create Sustainable Product Development.

 

With a few years of Japanese language study under my belt and a strong interest in Asia, I intended to study the social and environmental impacts of our product supply chains, much of which happens in the East. This led to my life-changing experiences studying abroad in Tokyo, Japan and completing a co-op abroad in Hong Kong, China. All the while, I was able to maintain a lively on-campus experience by serving the University as a Student Ambassador since Fall term of freshman year as well as an Orientation Leader and Resident Assistant. I thoroughly enjoyed being an integral part of the entire First Year Experience and opening new students’ eyes to just how many amazing things are possible at Drexel. Today, I feel I am the epitome of the Custom-Designed program’s motto: Declare independence. My experience at Drexel couldn’t be any more unique and I can honestly say that Drexel University is the perfect school for me.

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