Hi, my name is Abby Hack and I'm majoring in Visual Arts and getting a certificate in Computer Science. When I first came to Princeton I had no intention of majoring in art, but I always knew it was something I wanted to have as a constant among other classes. I originally wanted to major in Chemistry, and even thought about Chemical Engineering for a hot sec. As the semesters passed and Chemistry wasn't getting any more exciting, I quickly realized that art was always what I was most passionate about. I picked VIS because I enjoyed the classes the most and felt cared for by my professors. The other part of my academic life at Princeton is in STEM. So yes! You can do both. Computer science for me provides a really nice balance to VIS. It's been difficult, but definitely worth it, and I'm really excited to try and combine both fields in my thesis show this year.
Of course, at times it's been hard to be a VIS major socially and academically. When I tell people I'm VIS, their first reaction is always, "wow that sounds so fun." Of course it's fun (because I obviously enjoy it), but it's also incredibly challenging, and oftentimes people don't really realize that. It's easy to get sucked into comparing your workload or class demands to other students, but just remember that if you feel like you're learning and growing then that's all that matters! Just because you aren't spending your time writing essays or sitting in lectures does NOT mean that you are doing Princeton the wrong way.
Being a VIS major has been one of the best decisions I've ever made at Princeton. I have formed great relationships with my professors, grown a lot as an artist and learned a lot about myself. VIS has also given me some of my best friends. They're people I probably would not have met otherwise, and I'm so thankful to have them in my life. The Lewis Center is truly my home and I don't think I would be happier in any other major.
In addition to academic life, I'm an officer in Cannon and on the exec board for BAC. There aren't a lot of VIS majors in my non-VIS circles (actually there are zero), so if you're curious about that or just want to chat about life at Princeton and the arts hit me up! I'm always down for a meal or coffee and I'd love to get to know you and talk more about art!