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Jesse Barnes

"I declared myself pre-Med, because it's only two more classes than for the regular bio-major, so it's not a big deal." As a sophomore biology major at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Jesse Barnes already knows that, either by the M.D. route, the Ph.D. route, Route 66, or all three, he wants to become an infectious disease specialist, and he is assisting a post-doctoral researcher this summer in studying the behavior of an immune-system protein. When he gets back to school this fall, outside of his studies, he's looking forward to playing soccor for M.I.T., possibly getting involved with drama there, and spending time at his fraternity. He took Facing History his senior year and generally really enjoyed the program, the materials, the teaching methods of the course, and the learning opportunities it gave him: "At the very least, it really teaches a way of deciding your own morals . . . I'll stop and question every now and then, what would Facing History say about this or that decision; so at least I look at that perspective, even though I don't always agree." Concerning his group's project, he feels that "the actual physical doing of a web page was cool for me, because computers are so far from what I understand . . . Now I do know a lot of random facts about landmines; but more than just content, the whole process . . . we spent a lot of time doing research . . . we had the chance to talk to people, including [a prominent member] of the International Committee." Jesse also commented, "one thing that really struck me was that in the course of research, I came across a whole segment of people opposed to the campaign . . . a whole portion of the de-miners didn't like the campaign . . . it was pretty political; and it's arguable how effective it would be to actually ban landmines. They complained that with the whole political campaign, they were actually taking away resources from the people who were de-mining." In particular, because of their discovery of the dissenting movement, he realized "the importance of looking for all the people who might be opposed to [a cause] and of actually listening to their arguments."