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Laurie Polisky


Name: Laurie Polisky

Class Year: [2015]

Major: Psychology

Hometown: Deerfield, IL


  • Co-captain of Grinneleanor Roosevelts (lesser competitive team of Frisbee) last year
  • Organizing committee member for the first TEDx talks at Grinnell
  • Teaches in the Grinnell in prison program
  • Currently conducting an Independent Research psychology experiment studying the genius effect
  • Takes drum lessons


Describe your best moment at Grinnell:

It was 80’s Harris first year. I did a backbend with an air guitar all the way to the ground. Still to this day, I don’t understand how that happened. It literally doesn’t make sense considering I have back problems and I’m not flexible. Anyway, the next morning I couldn’t move. When I finally made it to D-hall, everyone was like “woooah you’re that girl who did the air guitar! You’re the best dancer I’ve ever seen! You are so cool.” And this was great because it was at the very begining of first year and I didn’t really have friends. I just really like 80’s music I guess.

What is your most embarrassing first year moment?

I never made it to tutorial on time. I would stroll in 20 minutes late. That might explain why I still don’t understand so many things about Grinnell


What has been/is your coolest job?

I’m always trying to make a quick buck, so naturally I got myself on the top of the list for taste testing. It’s market research about testing new foods.

What kind of foods have you tasted?

I’ve taste tested different brands of microwaveable macaroni and cheese, whisky (that was a fun one), and I’ve sampled s’mores flavored Oreos.  Don’t get excited, they are not so hot.

What exactly do you do when you taste?

I report on the ratio of pasta to cheesiness. I’ve rated the creaminess in the cheese sauce, the richness of the cheese sauce, and the flavors. There’s this little doggy door that they slide food through. So I just eat the food and then rate the food. I also have to cleanse my pallet in between samples, so I get sent Saltine crackers and water.

Do you ever get too full when you’re tasting? What happens if you do?

Well, there was this one time where I had to sample different Oreos. And I was supposed to measure cookie to cream ratio, and the creaminess of the cream inside, stuff like that. But, I didn’t know that I wasn’t supposed to eat all of the Oreos that they gave me. So they kept sending me three Oreos at a time, so I kept eating them all. I didn’t realize I had to go through like 9 different versions of Oreos. I ended up eating 28 Oreos in one sample session. I was so full it was awful. It’s really hard for me to look at processed foods in the same way after that day.

How often do you do this taste testing?

I do it whenever I’m home and I get a call (the lab is near Deerfield). I still get calls to go do it even when I’m here in school. I got my whole family into it. It’s now a family outing. Sometimes, my mom will call me up and warn me about the question they’ll ask so I can get into a specific tasting (they ask about allergies and stuff like that).


Status: Content

Deal breakers: Turtlenecks don’t do it

Most attractive quality in a person: Genuine and sincere

Post Harris, where are you are headed?  I never leave


What is something people don’t know about you? My second toe (index toe) on my right foot is slightly longer than my big toe. I’m going to cheat and do two. I was a vegetarian for 15 years. Then I was offered a Mcchicken. I was curious and never been back. It was good timing, I was thinking about breaking it. The circumstances were right. It was a Friday night and the Mcchicken was there.

Favorite dessert: Cream on anything. Pick your object, just put whip cream on it

Nutella or peanut butter? Combo. Half the spoon with peanut butter the other half with Nutella

Most hated word: Juice

What is some advice you would give to a new Grinnellian? Embrace everything. Acknowledge what you feel and what you have to say about it.

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