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Clarkie of the Week: Sarah Wells

Wells+explores+the+commonalities+between+the+sciences+and+the+humanities.+
Wells explores the commonalities between the sciences and the humanities.

Wells explores the commonalities between the sciences and the humanities.

Celine Manneville

Celine Manneville

Wells explores the commonalities between the sciences and the humanities.

Anna Schaeffer, Scarlet Staff

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Sarah Wells ( ‘17) is an english major with a double minor in physics and computer science.

Scarlet: Where are you from?

Sarah: I’m from Montpelier, Vermont. It was a really great place to grow up.

Scarlet: Do you have any hobbies or are you part of any clubs here on campus?

Sarah: I’m the president of Caesura Magazine. We’re working on the spring edition, so that’s exciting. I’m also part of Students Advocating Safe Choices (SASC) and I work at the Registrar’s Office.

Scarlet: Why don’t you tell me a little bit about your thesis?

Sarah: It’s sort of an interdisciplinary honors thesis, but it’s through the English Department. I’m looking at the way academic language works in the sciences versus the humanities, because a lot of people see them as being very disparate kinds of groups. But since I’ve been studying them so much I see a lot of similarities and commonalities between them.

Scarlet: I’m sure you’d notice a lot of patterns in the writing after a while.

Sarah: Yeah, I definitely do. But my main argument for my thesis is basically that figurative language, metaphorical language, and analogies work in both areas, and they make the scholarship more accessible to people who aren’t necessarily from those disciplines or familiar with the material.

Scarlet: Would you argue for more qualitative language in scientific reports?

Sarah: Yeah, well, what I talk about is how inherent I think figurative language is to the sciences. I talk about quantum physics a little bit, and how those concepts are so intangible that you need to use figurative language to discuss them, which you also kind of see in written works.

Scarlet: So, you’d argue for more of a bridge between the sciences and the humanities?

Sarah: Yeah, I think so, there are a lot more similarities between the two than there are differences. In the introduction to my paper I say that both are trying to understand the world, and it shouldn’t be so separate because they have similar goals, but different ways of getting to them.

Scarlet: Do you wanna stick around Worcester after you graduate?

Sarah: I’m gonna be here next year. I’m doing a science journalism program at Boston University and commuting into Boston. I’m really looking forward to learning more about it.

Scarlet: What kind of work would you ideally be doing when you’re done with school?

Sarah: I’d like to be what I call a “science communicator,” so writing articles for popular science magazines like Smithsonian Magazine, or science video scripts like PBS Nova.

Scarlet: Would you say Clark has prepared you well for getting into one of those jobs?

Sarah: Yeah, the biggest thing that I’m taking away from Clark is that if you have a passion for something you can make it happen. If nothing else, I feel like the Clark community is a very passionate place. I don’t think that at a different college I could have studied the very different areas that I studied, and gotten so much encouragement from the professors to follow my passions.

Scarlet: Would you say that’s your favorite part of being here?

Sarah: This might sound cliché, but my favorite thing about Clark are definitely my friends. I’ve met so many better people at Clark than in high school.

Scarlet: What would you say is your favorite spot on campus?

Sarah: I really like the lounges in BP. I also like the courtyard right outside the building – it’s really pretty.

Scarlet: If you had to give Clark first-years one piece of advice, what would you tell them?

Sarah: I would want to say that it’s okay to figure out what you want to study as you go, and that you don’t need to know what you’re doing right away.

Scarlet: Got any shoutouts?

Sarah: Yeah! Shoutout to 113 Woodland St.!

Thanks for the interview, Sarah!

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Clarkie of the Week: Sarah Wells