Meet Jesse Young, Humanities and Social Sciences Student of the Month
Hometown: Burnsville, NC
Majors: Religious Studies and Spanish
- Hispanic Cinema
- Religion and Conflict
- Study Abroad, University of the Basque Country (Spain), Spring 2017
- Peer Mentor, Religious Studies, Fall 2017
- Tutor, Academic Support Program for Student Athletes, Fall 2016-present
UNC Asheville, January 2014-May 2015
Postgraduate/Career Goal: I intend to enroll in graduate school for Religious Studies and anticipate a career in academia.
Why did you select Humanities and Social Sciences?
I transferred to the college because I felt the degree was worth more here – the faculty and reputation are excellent.
What has been your favorite course(s)?
One favorite course was Introduction to the Old Testament with Dr. Jason Sturdevant. When I began here, my degree was Spanish, but I found this course so exciting and inspiring that I added Religious Studies as a second major. I also enjoyed Buddhist Tradition with Dr. Levi McLaughlin, and in fact, asked Dr. McLaughlin about doing research on the topic. This semester, he is overseeing my independent study on Pure Land Buddhism, an experience that is very valuable in preparation for graduate study.
Describe the impact of your study abroad.
The contrast between countries was very enlightening for me. While there are many aspects of shared culture between the United States and Spain, there are some subtle differences that cannot be clearly articulated but instead should be experienced firsthand. One example is in the way people speak to each other — the types of questions they ask and the type of information they share with others.
What advice would you give incoming students?
Be proactive. In high school, teachers more often guide and help you, but at the college level, individual students must make a greater effort to ask for assistance in reaching their goals.