Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Trying My Best

Today, NEMOW went to Wellesley College for a tour of the campus, lunch with a current student there, and an informational session

about the college. It was a little over an hour ride to get to the school. It was better than the 3 hour car ride to Dartmouth College in New Hampshire yesterday, but it still felt like a long time. I found myself in Wellesley, Massachusetts when there were lots of trees and nicely cut lawns. After failing an attempt to slide under a parking lot with a maximum height smaller than the car, we finally found parking near the main office.

Beautiful Wellesley College
The tour guide for the school was a girl named Dylan McGarvey who is a rising junior at Wellesley College. Unlike other tour guides, she gave out her contact information on a business card. Everyone should do this because there are always questions that we come up with after the tour. Wellesley is an all girl college with about 2,300 students and with 18 students in the average class. As a school with only girls, I can see how different it is to normal schools. For instance, the bathrooms have Febreze and the library is decorated with necklaces. It's a tradition for students to decorate the statues in the library however they want when they graduate. Also, women don't get harassed by men as often and their opinions will always be supported. There are many things that make the school better than a lot of other ones that I've been to. For one, counselors are willing to help students even after they graduate, unlike counselors in UC Berkeley who charge you 100 dollars for every year you see them. Just like the other schools that I've been to this week, financial aid is offered to every student depending on how much they are needy. 

For lunch, we ate at Blue Ginger with Dylan and I had a great conversation with her and Jenny. I took this opportunity to ask her about things that only pertain to me such as financial aid for international students. She said that the school will offer money to anyone, as long as they are at the school. It feels comforting to know that a college will be there for you the whole way. I also learned that you have to fill out the FASFA in January so that you can get your tuition price with your acceptance letter in the summer.

Dinner at Camille's Restaurant
For dinner, we ate out at a fancy restaurant with current or previous students at Brown and a current Chemistry teacher at Brown. I also saw the three people who ran the workshop about first generation students to go to college during the SUMMER@BROWN Program. I got to talk to a medical director named Jose Polanco who studied at Brown and made friends who helped him get this far in his education and career. Jose was born in Dominican Republic but he was raised in Rhode Island. He was also a first generation, like most of us, and had determination to finish school and pay back all his loans in ten years. It would of taken him thirty years to pay back all of the money he borrowed for college but he worked night shifts as a shuttle bus driver and a ER doctor to speed things up. Jose gave me advice to know what I want to do in advance so that I wouldn't have to spend more years in college taking pointless classes. Jose's story made me motivated to try my best in order to succeed. 

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