Alex Martinez

Philosophy, Class of 2020

I’m a Philosophy major with a certificate in Cognitive Science.

Role(s) held in the Humanistic Studies Program:

Student Mentor, Behrman Society

Activities on campus:

Princeton Faith and Action, Princeton Running Club, Pace Center for Civic Engagement, Mental Health Breakout Leader, Concepts and Cognition Laboratory Princeton Disability Awareness carnival


Behrman Society

Why I decided to study the humanities:

In deciding what to study, I knew I wanted to honor the opportunities God’s given me and the sacrifices my parents have made as first-gen, so that I could study what I find most meaningful as a second-gen student. Academically, this means I decided to study philosophy: something I genuinely love and believe is worthy to explore. Literature provides me worlds to consider and philosophy gives me lens to analyze and appreciate them. I believe that both make me more empathetic and open in life, leading me to seek out the stories that each human being has and must continue to shape, as I continue to craft my own.

What I have gained from the humanities:

I had previously assumed that reading was a thoroughly individual endeavour: the classic introvert’s pastime, to be done in solitary. Throughout the HUM Sequence, it was delightful to confront a book this way myself at first, but it was so engaging afterwards to bring it into conversation with a group of others. This corporate approach to reading was reflected in the incredible team of faculty, coming from across disciplines in the humanity to share their “readings.” The class trips to museums, plays, and ultimately Greece, only strengthened my belief now that literature connects across individuals and across time.

HUM Sequence fall break trip:

I participated in the HUM trip to Greece led by Professor Benjamin Morison. We primarily lived in Athens, where I conducted independent work to explore the physical formation of the Areopagus, as I considered its historical, religious, and political significance.

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