Student Spotlight: Paul Samberg
Paul Samberg is one of the four student scholarship winners of the Alumni Association’s ‘Member Madness’ campaign, which awarded $1,000 scholarships to students in need in four different schools chosen by your membership purchases, renewals and donations.
How has COVID impacted you over the last year?
One of the silver linings with the pandemic was its ability to give me the time and space I needed to help me focus in on what I want to do in life. I initially entered school as a journalism major, but following my campaign internship this past spring and summer, I realized that politics is equally as important to me, which is why I upgraded my political science minor to a major—same with Jewish studies. Now, because of my newfound clarity during the pandemic, I am confident in where I’d like to go in life and am proud of the effort I am making to get there.
What are your career aspirations?
I am hoping to graduate KU and go to graduate school either to study political communications or public policy. Ultimately, I aspire to work in the world of politics, whether that be policy or communications related, or both. My dream job is to be a presidential speech writer, so I hope that my experience creating communications materials or policy plans at think tanks, on campaigns or for nonprofits will give me valued experience to achieve my dreams.
What has your experience been with the KU Mentoring platform?
I have used the KU Mentoring platform and was able to connect with someone in the field of politics. I am deciding between two different types of graduate programs, so it was super helpful to talk to a KU mentor who is in the field and gave me some great guidance and insight. I’m looking forward to staying in touch with her and connecting with a couple more KU mentors, who are doing interesting work in my desired profession.
What advice would you give to someone starting KU in the fall?
I think it’s really important to be willing to try new things. When I was in high school, I participated in very few of my high school’s clubs or organizations and didn’t expect to be involved in any at KU. However, I’ve come to realize how important student involvement is, and I am now involved in more organizations than I can often count, which has really helped me better acclimate to college, build a community and expand my awareness of the many perspectives found at KU. I know the opportunities I’ve had and connections I’ve made are because of my effort to get involved and take advantage of all KU offers students.
Favorite KU Memory or tradition?
When I went to my first basketball game at Allen Fieldhouse, I happened to have my article published on the front page of the University Daily Kansan that day. To see my entire camping group, as well as everyone else in attendance, see and read my article before tearing the newspaper into confetti was a surreal experience. It was nice to see my on campus involvement intertwine with my social life and what has become one of my favorite KU traditions.