For student, college success comes in bigger package

<p>Malvika Sinha made what some would consider a surprising change early in her college career. She transferred to ASU from Vassar midway through her freshman year after realizing Vassar wasn’t a good fit.</p><separator></separator><p>Having graduated from Corona del Sol High School in Tempe, she had always dreamt of attending a school on the East Coast. But she was unprepared for how the small campus made her feel and how limited she felt her opportunities were.</p><separator></separator><p>“Although I had amazing professors and friends, it was too small, and I felt claustrophobic,” said the global studies major. “There were barely any extracurricular opportunities that fit my interests, and student involvement was really low. After talking to an ASU professor in Barrett, the Honors College, I transferred in January 2008, and I am absolutely sure I made the right decision.”</p><separator></separator><p>Now she’s taking international law classes at the ASU College of Law as a junior, and she is deeply immersed in an independent study of international courts around the world and how they deal with victims of genocide and other war crimes. She has received research funding from Barrett and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences to study victims outreach programs around the world.</p><separator></separator><p>Sinha is working on her senior thesis with Victor Peskin, a professor in the School of Politics and Global Studies, who is an expert on war crimes tribunals. Next summer she hopes to go to Cambodia and the Hague to study their war crimes courts.</p><separator></separator><p>&nbsp;“There are so many resources here for students who want to get involved academically,” Sinha said. “My first year I was an undergraduate research fellow at the Center for Religion and Conflict with Dr. Tisa Wenger, helping her with research on her upcoming book about religious freedom in the United States. This year Dr. Peskin has spent countless hours helping me find research materials and helping me find contacts at international courts around the world.”</p><separator></separator><p>Sinha said she especially liked studying abroad on the Barrett France program, living in Paris for a month and using the city as her classroom. She also was accepted to a conference at Northwestern University last year, where she attended a panel on humanitarian aid and watched academic experts debate human rights questions.</p><separator></separator><p>One of her favorite classes was the freshman core course at Barrett: "The Human Event."</p><separator></separator><p>“It is one of the best classes I have taken so far in college,” said Sinha. “Dr. (John) Lynch was a wonderful professor, and the class was smaller than even some of my Vassar classes. I got everything I could possibly want out of that class: engaged students, a writing-intensive seminar, and a professor who went out of his way to help his students. The class was extremely challenging, but I got so much out of it.”</p><separator></separator><p>Sinha now acts as a tutor in the Barrett Writing Center, working with other students to hone their research and writing skills. In addition to writing class papers, Barrett students must write a senior thesis, working one-on-one with an ASU faculty member from his or her field for about a year, then defend the thesis in front of a group of faculty.</p><separator></separator><p class="MsoNormal" style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;">&nbsp;</p>