Thursday, July 14, 2011

To Whom Much is Given, Much is Expected.

Being a part of the 2011 Ivy League Connection program was something special. I was in the ILC last year and it was special, but nothing compares to this year. I have so many memories and valued experiences that I will treasure for a lifetime. I hope to convey these valued experiences with those in my communities. I am hoping through vicarious projects those around me will be able to relive to a certain extent, my experiences.

Last year as a sophomore I was quite ignorant to the whole college application process and college life. And even when I met with several alums and admissions officers last year I did not know the great opportunity I was having until I reflected upon my 2010 ILC experience. But this year as a returning ILC member I already knew of the great things and people I would be exposed to. This allowed me to prepare to meet these people beforehand. I prepared questions and found some background information about the places and people we would be visiting. I was fortunate enough to be accompanied by my lovely chaperone Sarah Larson, as well as my bright cohorts; Frank, Erin, Erinn, and Kathleen.

I could not have asked for a better group to travel with. I learned so much about each of my cohorts and this in essence helped me learn more about myself. As I reflect on my ILC experience, I know for a fact that I would not have met or even gotten so close to some of these people. They were all fantastic and very intelligent. We had fun and goofy moments in which we played silly games such as pterodactyl. But was also had deep and thought provoking discussions about sciences, politics, and our futures. Because of this great balance there was never a dull moment when we were all together. Each of my cohorts and my chaperone made my 2011 ILC experience very special.

This just goes to say to say that as I got close to these people, the ILC became like my family. It meant a great deal to be a part of this family. Before I got close to these people I did not even imagine that this cohort of mine would mean that much to me. But as we spent so much time together it meant so much for me to be in this ILC family. My definition of family is a support unit that even through trials and tribulations will help you and care for you. This ILC group was all that for me so I thank them for that.

Because this group of people was so supportive of me in all my endeavors this will make me even more successful in the future. So when I run for president in year 2032 and I need economic counsel I will phone Kathleen. Or if my campaign design and aesthetics are a bit bland I will contact my good friend Erin. Even if my administration is trying to create a new organism or save the environment I will have Erinn on speed dial. And lastly if I just need any advice at all I can rely on the sheer genius of Frank She. So within this small family I believe I have many connections that I will need to be a successful president. It is no doubt in my mind that each of my cohorts will be successful in all that they do.
Meeting with several admissions officers I came to a couple conclusions about the college application process. The first was that not one thing on your application makes or breaks you in terms of admittance. You should take rigorous classes in high school, and they should also correspond to what to you want to do in college. Next it is better to participate in a few extracurricular activities that you really care about, opposed to a slew of activities that you just do to boost your application. In your essay be yourself and not who you think the admissions officer wants you to be. Lastly you should be a well-rounded student and you are bound to get into the college that is meant for you.

As I sit here and write this reflection I am so confident and have little ambiguity about what I need for an astonishing college application. I am also comfortable with all of the necessary steps I will need to take in order to complete my application in a timely fashion. But then I begin to think, what if I was not fortunate enough to have been a part of the ILC? I do not think I would be as confident. I believe that there are others right around me still curious about the whole process. Because the ILC gave me such a great opportunity I feel it is my duty to invest back into the program by helping those in the WCCUSD and those around me. Like the famous saying goes, to whom much is given, much is expected. This should be the staple of the ILC because everyone who has ever been a member of the ILC knows that they were given a great gift. We should all be expected to invest back into the program.

What I hope to do is gather a few of my cohorts and create a presentation of what the ILC is and its benefits. With all of my experiences and my cohorts experience we can present to our local middle schools, their parents, our city council and school board. This would be to inform the greater public of what a great program the ILC is. But also this is to help our district. If we can encourage middle school students to be motivated and care about their work in the classroom I believe this will raise academic performance in our district. Realistically not every student will be in the ILC, but if they are motivated to work that much harder the level of academic success will increase in our district.

My second endeavor is similar to my first. I would team up with some of my ILC cohorts and we will organize all of the information we have learned about college, the application, and admissions process. We would present this invaluable information to high school students. Because I truly believe that most high school students want to go to college, but they are unsure of the entire process and what steps they need to take. If we organize all we have learned from the admissions officers and alums we can help assist our peers in their college quests. This will create a college bound culture at our schools and this is what the ILC is about. As I serve as an ambassador to my district, younger students will want to be like me or other ILC members and hence the level of academic performance will go up. Then those high school students who feel that the college application process is ambiguous will learn what I have learned and hopefully go to college.

I think that both of these plans are more than viable and doable. And this passion about others, success, and education was really sparked by the ILC. I believe that I have grown so much as a result of being a part of the ILC. I cannot express my gratitude for this program and everyone involved. This program has allowed me to broaden my horizon, not only about college but employment. Before entering in the ILC I never entertained the idea of becoming president. But the ILC has taught me that if you work hard for something and build connections you can achieve what you want. Also this program allowed me to ally myself with people who can help my presidential campaign. My future Vice President Milani Lyman is finishing up her Presidential Powers class. This will be a very essential asset in 2032. In this program I have met sons of governors and others in high positions. With these connections my run for President has become more viable and feasible. This is just one of many stories of how the ILC has helped me immensely. So in closing I would like to say it was my true honor to be part of the ILC for the past two year now. I have made so many valuable connections and friends. I have learned so much, and with this newfound knowledge it would be impossible and selfish for me to keep it to myself. So I will share this information on behalf of the ILC. I truly want to be the best ambassador of the ILC that I can be. TO WHOM MUCH IS GIVEN, MUCH IS EXPECTED.

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