Dana Reszutek, CAS, Journalism & Psychology

It all starts with erasing. Whittling down your wooden pencil’s eraser in 6th grade math class when you don’t know the answer. Crossing out half a Blue Book page during a Texts & Ideas exam when your response may not cut it. Erase it and try again.

Though my time at New York University has been amazing in unexpected ways, there have been a lot of ink stains on paper, deleted drafts and erased equations. College, for me, was about finding myself through my quiet chaos of errors.

I came into NYU thinking I had it all figured out. But no one tells you that the “intended major” you fill out on your admitted student form is probably not what you’re going to end up doing.

I only happened upon journalism, to be honest. Writing poems and journaling has been part of my life since I could pick up a pen. I even published my own Microsoft Word-curated “Dana Daily” newspaper as a child, complete with my multimedia team of Clip Art. But writing, for me, never caught on as a “thing you can do for a living.” So I focused on my love of science and the mind, and started my college journey as pre-med, with the goal of becoming a psychiatrist. (This former career goal still shocks me today.)

But when two of my closest friends encouraged me to attend a pitch meeting at the Features Desk of Washington Square News freshman year, something clicked. A week later, I took two stories for the desk, and dove into the field of journalism. But I still only saw journalism as my creative outlet until my sophomore year.

I was leaving the last New York Fashion Week show for the day, and walking home from Chelsea, furiously typing notes on my phone for my review on the event I just attended. Amid the madness and stress that Fashion Week holds, I finally felt it for the first time. It was like the butterflies in your stomach you get when you have a crush, but so much better; I finally knew what I wanted to do with my life.

In a rush, I ran East, finished my review and called my mom. It was time to drop Organic Chemistry and pursue a Journalism major.

For any NYU student still finding your way, sometimes quitting isn’t all that bad. Drop a class, and pick up something different. Whatever gives you that sweet feeling in your gut — you’re probably doing something right. Embrace your mistakes. Achieve through your struggles. Take that risk you thought you couldn’t do. Sometimes those smudges on the page, those random club meetings you attend, may let you erase your original plan and help you find your future.