Friday, July 17, 2009

A Bitter Sweet Farewell

My final day in class consisted of presentations. Working in pairs or individually, everyone taught their project to the class through PowerPoint. During lunch, there was a mandatory college presentation, which was led by the assistant director of undergraduate admissions for Columbia. She stressed, "Do your research" and ways of doing so would be college visits or tours, research through the Web, live on the college campus, and talk to others. She touched on the meaning of Ivy League, Columbia's core curriculum, class sizes, what the admission office is looking for, importance of scores, number of recommendations, decision types, and financial aid. I think that though I knew some facts already, there was a lot of gaps that were filled in for me. It proved to be useful overall.

I cannot believe that it has already been three weeks! My experience at Columbia has been so amazing and indescribable. Though I was kept constantly on my toes, it felt good to be on the fast pace track. I enjoyed being able to do school work, but at the same time know that there was always some other activity I could do. I loved the laid out campus and being able to show others direction on the very first day. I found it interesting that the weather would be 73 degrees with sunny skies one day, but then 73 degrees with thunderstorms and lightning on another. I never got to try out all the food on Broadway, but it was great being able to see the different cultures. I will miss my class and suite mates greatly, for these three weeks with them seems more like 3 months!

From all the little details to broader ones, Columbia's impact gave me both similar and different insights than Brown. I am leaving this campus with a similar sense of independence and stronger leadership. I am walking out with knowledge not only my class, but from the general day to day activities. I have gained a taste of the New York experience. I only met residential students at Brown, but now I know and understand some of the ways of commuter students. I went to colleges, fairs, and presentations, which gives me a step up in figuring out what I want for my future. I am not as afraid and worried about what will happen. I have learned to take deep breaths, pace myself, and take charge of what I want from life.

I left Brown thinking that nothing can beat the experience, but Columbia has blown me away. I normally do not prefer big cities like Manhattan, but by attending Columbia, it has expanded my options. One can never really understand how they actually feel about a certain location unless they stay for a duration of time. Columbia is an amazing college and I am not saying so because it is an Ivy League. Many students tell me that there will be an attachment to a certain college and that is when you know it is a good choice. Three weeks ago I would have said that Columbia is not the college for me, but now I am sure that it will be on my college list.

The quote by Les Brown, "Shoot for the moon and even if you miss, you will land among the stars" can be applied to my experience in the East Coast. I took this wonderful opportunity and chance to first go to one of the smallest state and then to one of the largest cities. I went through stress, laughter, pain, and joy, but new doors are opening.

Thank you so much to all the Ivy League sponsors and supporters! Thank you to Mr. Ramsey, Ms. Kronenburg, Ms. O'Brian, Ms. Lihanand, and all who have helped me along my journey through the ILC. Once more you have provided me with an unforgettable experience that will forever impact my future. I am grateful for everything you have done and I hope that the ILC will flourish and pave new and wondrous opportunities for new generations of students.

*I will try to create a slideshow in the next few days, showing the Summer Columbia 2009 students from start to finish

1 comment:

Madeline Kronenberg said...


What a wonderful post -- so well said. We have the greatest hopes for you -- for yourself and for how you will influence others to follow your lead. New doors are opening and will continue to open for you.

I'm looking forward to the slide show.

Welcome home.

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