IU 2020 Series: Kendall Riley

Junior year was gone in the blink of an eye. 

I met some more amazing people and really found my niche at IU.  And while it was easily my most challenging year, I was able to gain so many great experiences and continue to grow. I joined two different psychology research labs last year and learned so much. My human biology class showed me how cool research can be. Ever since then, I have become kind of obsessed with everything research!
Outside of school, my friends and I became more curious about Bloomington outside of just IU, and we we set out to do more things unrelated to campus. We took full advantage of BJ’s Brewhouse’s Pazookie Tuesdays, $2 Taco Tuesday at Social Cantina, bowling, ice skating … we even held our own game nights on the regular. Junior year was taxing on all of us, but we made sure to de-stress regularly! 
I also decided, partway through my sophomore year, to jump on the natural hair movement. I embraced my curly hair instead of chemically altering it and straightening it all the time. So junior year was also spent learning how to take care and style the beast that is curly hair. Now, a full 1.5 years later, I am  the proud owner of a very healthy, curly afro and have not straightened my hair in over a year!  
I decided to spend part of my summer in town after junior year. During the summer, Bloomington is a whole other town compared to Bloomington during the school year. Everything is more slowly paced and less crowded. I got to see all of the incoming freshmen and their families walking around campus and getting ready to take the next big step in their lives. I was lucky enough to get the chance to work in both research labs which, of course, I took advantage of! Being an undergraduate teaching assistant for one of my favorite classes—bio-anthropology—gave me a chance to work with one of my favorite associate instructors. I helped finalize class materials and worked with students to help them understand concepts. I also got advice about graduate school from my professor, and got to hear about her experiences traveling the world. 
The rest of my break was spent vacationing with my family, studying for the GRE, starting the graduate school search, and relaxing poolside at my parents’ house! As nice as summer was, though, I missed the normalcy of school and all my friends, and I’m glad to be back for senior year
Kendall Riley head shot
Kendall Riley

Kendall is a senior studying psychology in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences. She's one of 12 Indiana University students featured in the IU 2020 Series, a four-year documentary film produced by student interns in the Office of the Provost for the IU Bicentennial.