Michelle Lu

 I am currently a sophomore in the College of Arts and Sciences Class of 2020. I recently declared a major in Urban Studies and a minor in Urban Real Estate and Development. I hope to pursue a career that brings together policy research and public engagement. I believe in making tangible change using interdisciplinary solutions that bring together various schools of thought and remain faithful to empirical evidence. I am passionate in making a difference in the communities that I live in, starting with Penn and West Philly.   Integrated Studies is the foundation of my entire college career. The ability to live and learn with some of the brightest students at Penn during my first year here encouraged me to explore different disciplines using completely new ways of thinking. I learned how to think about and approach new challenges and experiences. For example, through my BFS adviser, I was able to intern with the Philadelphia Orchestra the summer after my freshman year. Though this experience, I learned about the value of the arts in making social change, promoting cross-cultural communication, and engaging in local communities. Furthermore, the professors who teach ISP and BFS Seminars are some of the most accomplished and revolutionary figures on this campus. It is a privilege to have access to such incredible intellectuals who gave me the confidence to pursue unconventional paths and find connections across various fields of study.