[MUSIC PLAYING] SPEAKER 1: Deciding to come to Cornell was a lot about knowing that, no matter what I decided to study or combine with computer science, I would have a world class department and be able to take classes in that and really learn about all these different fields.
Freshman year, I was taking one of my writing seminars on how the mind works, and so that was actually in the psych department, but it was-- there was a lot of overlap with philosophy. And so I just sort of started taking philosophy classes to fulfill different requirements and eventually realized that I was really enjoying these classes. And so I just kept taking more and eventually got to the point where I almost had a major, and so I figured, might as well take a few more classes and sort of finish up that path.
LAUREN STECHSCHULTE: I really like combining technology and the humanities, because it brings a lot of variety to the work that I do. I like how the CS major has an external specialization, which let me explore the German side. And I really like the combination of doing more problem solving work and also exploring literature.
SPEAKER 1: I think philosophy has really taught me how to look at big questions and break them down, examine all different parts and factors that are affecting how we might find solutions. And that's something that I think you can really apply to any field.
With computer science in particular, there are a lot of questions about ethics. I think as artificial intelligence gets bigger and bigger, there are self-driving cars on the roads now, and there are questions about, if a car like that gets into an accident, then whose fault is it? You can't put a computer program in jail.
And so I think philosophy has sort of given me a chance to look at questions like that.
LAUREN STECHSCHULTE: In natural language processing, I was able to do a final project that looked at German writings from non-native speakers and try to look into what grammatical issues they might have. And so that's one direct way that I've seen German in CS, but I also think that I've seen it in more abstract ways.
I took a compilers class. And, in that, you talked a lot about grammars and parsing, so a lot of the thinking overlapped there, too.
SPEAKER 1: I'm going to San Francisco to work for a tech company called Thumbtack. And what they do is they help people to hire local professionals or local services, and so I'm going to be working on their website and their mobile apps to make the experience easier for users on both sides.
LAUREN STECHSCHULTE: I'm planning on being a software engineer in the future. And I think that the ways that my German major come into play with that is that I've already seen a lot of opportunities where I could go to Germany and work.
And, also, I think that it applies in more abstract ways, again, because we discuss culture a lot in our German classes, and I think that that has helped give me some perspective when talking about products in the technical field and how they might influence their users.
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Combining technology and the humanities at Cornell.