Hello! My name is Alexandra but I like to go by Sasha. Sasha is the Russian nickname for Alexandra, and, since my mom is Russian, I’ve gone by that name for as long as I can remember. It always confused teachers when I was growing up. I’m a senior and a biology major here at Amherst College. I also have a passion for neuroscience that has led me to take a lot of neuroscience courses both for my major and for fun. One of my all time favorite courses I’ve taken here at Amherst is neurophysiology with Professor Trapani. Although the subject material was hard, Trapani’s upbeat personality and excitement for the topic made the class genuinely fun and interesting, and I found that I gained a deeper understanding of how the brain works than I ever thought I would.
I also have been a member of the Karate club here at Amherst since I was a freshman. I’d never done Karate before coming to college, but here it has been an integral part of my life. I love the sense of camaraderie I feel with everyone on the Karate team as we grow and learn together. Every Tuesday I attend the meditation group sessions in Chapin Chapel, which helps to keep me grounded and calm amidst the stress of student life. Throughout my time here at Amherst, I’ve worked as a lifeguard, a phonathon caller, a tour guide, and in Val dining hall. I’ve also tried equestrian club, occasionally attend anime club meetings, and once was the secretary for pride alliance. My Junior year I studied abroad in Japan for my spring semester. I didn’t speak a word of Japanese before I went, but I found that I really loved living in Japan, and I connected with Japanese culture in a lot of ways I didn’t really expect. Coming back to the Amherst after this experience I felt that I was seeing the campus with a different perspective. I’ve decided to continue studying Japanese for the rest of my senior year in hopes of going abroad again after I graduate. I’m also looking forward to going abroad again over Christmas break. I will be joining a group of my peers on a trip to Costa Rica, as part of a research seminar on tropical biology. I’m super excited for this trip!
During my time here at Amherst I feel that I’ve experienced so many different sides of the college and engaged with so many different types of people. Despite this, I am acutely aware of how much the college has to offer that I haven’t taken advantage of during my time here. I’m looking forward to continuing to explore all the different aspects of Amherst college life, and I hope to spend my remaining year at Amherst continuing to connect with all the people that I’ve met here and that have helped to make my life here interesting and meaningful. I hope that I can share a bit of this journey with you through these blog posts.