Kendra Van Nyhuis

Job title: 
L&S College Adviser
Math & Physical Sciences A

Title: L&S College Adviser

Neighborhood: Math and Physical Sciences A

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About Kendra 

Joined the L&S Office of Undergraduate Advising in:
December 2019

PhD Ethnomusicology, UC Berkeley, 2020
M.A. Ethnomusicology, UC Berkeley, 2014
B.A. Anthropology, University of South Dakota, 2012
B.F.A. Music Education, University of South Dakota, 2012

What is your approach to advising?
I am here to help!  If you need information, clarification, advice, or support, my goal is to make sure you can get it. Cal can be a complicated place to navigate, and I will do everything I can to make sure that you are heard, you have what you need to succeed in the moment, and that you cultivate the tools you will need to succeed in the future.

How did you get here?
I have always known that I want to work with students. At first this was as a high school choir teacher, but then I caught the research bug and decided to pursue an ethnomusicology PhD. I loved teaching Berkeley students, but I did not have the work/life balance I needed, and time spent on my research often took away from my ability to help students. When I started looking at other career options, advising was a perfect combination of intellectual challenge and student support.  
What advice do you have for L&S students in general?
As someone who has taken a somewhat circuitous path to my current position, I am proof that your major is not your career. Your education experience is what you make of it, and many skills you cultivate in college can be ‘spun’ into a variety of career paths. A certain major does not guarantee career success or failure; find a major you are passionate about, doing things that you enjoy while cultivating marketable skills.

Most unusual job you ever had:
Maybe not ‘unusual,’ but I worked as a student researcher at the National Music Museum in South Dakota, studying East Asian instruments. It was an amazing entry to research work, and I had some great mentors. I spent my days measuring and cataloging East Asian instruments in the NMM’s extensive collection.

About me:
My PhD research focused on underground rock in South Korea, and I lived in South Korea for a few years. Music is still a big part of my life: performing, listening, studying. I also love a lot of nerdy things: video games, anime, comic books, movies, YouTube philosophy/science videos, and much more. Random fact: I love to watch cooking shows and videos, but hate actually cooking.