Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Looking Back

I've been back in California for 4 days now, but Brown is still the biggest thing on my mind. Mr. Ramsey wasn't kidding when he said we'd come back different people. College has left a life-changing impression on me for the better.

The obvious change would be my knowledge. I learned a plethora of useful information from my economics class. From supply and demand to the stock market, I've not only been prepared for high school economics, but for the real world as well. Economics was very much like a science class, where I could learn about how the world operates, or more specifically, why countries do what they do. As someone with little prior money experience, I can now invest my money in various markets or take loans with the confidence that I know what I'm doing. I can safely say that I wouldn't have that knowledge without the ILC.

College in general, besides just Brown, left an even bigger impression on me. Even though we had regional assistants, I've never felt more independent in my life. There's nothing more rewarding than getting things done on your own accord. I've gotten exceedingly better at time management, studying, and interacting with others. It's a bit of a double-edged sword. On one hand I've received a wonderful college experience that has completely transformed my life and way of thinking. However, now that I have a taste of college, I don't want to go back to high school. My senior year will be difficult, but I'm going to work extra hard and push my limits. My college experience has motivated me to be the best I can, so that when it comes time to pick a college, I'll have as many options as possible.

What surprised me the most about college was the diversity. I come from a fairly diverse and liberal area, so I thought I had a pretty good idea what diversity was. I was taken aback at the huge difference between California and Brown.  Where I live, despite the vast amount of cultures and races that are mixed together, the mindset of the community is very different. At college, everyone is eager to learn, based on their seeking of a higher level of education. This is combined with tons of people wanting to share their ideas. What results is a congregation of brilliant minds, feeding and growing of the knowledge of each other. It's a perfect environment to make new friends and expand your own knowledge, just like I did.

I felt very accomplished in the ILC's goal to spread the word of our district to the Ivy League colleges, and vice versa. All of the admissions officers were well aware of the WCCUSD, which is a given considering we had prearranged meetings with them. In addition, my economics professor was happy to see new cohorts from the ILC, and I would assume that many of the other professors in other cohort's classes are aware of the ILC. However, I believe the stronger effect has come from spreading the word back home. I can't remember the last conversation I've had where I didn't mention the ILC. I think I must have spread the word to at least a hundred people by now, if not more. As someone who enjoys helping people, I really hope that I've changed at least one person's perspectives on colleges, and broadened their horizons.

My journey with the ILC is near complete, but I know that hundreds of students just like me will get to live the same amazing experience. My thanks go out to everyone who made this possible, and who will continue to make it possible into the future.
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