Friday, July 3, 2009

Friends, Comparisons, and Fun

There was no school today and still what a long day! We went to Ellis Island, saw the Statue of Liberty, walked to Wall Street, and saw the 9/11 Reconstruction zone. It was very amazing and fun, especially since the Brown University students joined us! It was a great way to meet up with friends both new and old as well as share our insights and views of the two Ivy Leagues.

Two very great colleges are right in front of our eyes; however they cannot be more different. Going around my peers I noticed that Brown seems to have a more mellow atmosphere. There are not as much activities one can do compared to being at Columbia! It would seem that being in New York City will always keep you busy and one just cannot be bored! Plus at Brown, the buildings all are in different areas and streets, making it slightly harder to find the place one wants to go. On the other hand, Columbia is like an enclosed section and everything is set in place so that it's easier to find. Nevertheless, walking around Brown used to give me a relax feeling whereas I feel that I should always be doing something when I'm at Columbia. In terms of school structure, I feel that it would be nice to have some sort of chart that could show the differences and similarities of classes, financial aid, or just any information laid out on one whole piece of paper. I need to personally push to research more, but I think the best way to see if a school is right for you is when one experiences it first hand.

I really loved seeing my friends from El Cerrito and Richmond. It was also great to meet the students from Hercules and Pinole! I wish that we could have a chance to visit them in Brown, but they are leaving this week. I think this type of event was useful and I hope it will happen for ILC members in the future.

When the Columbia group went back to the school, we had yummy pizza with Yohanna. I was also able to get my New York Cheesecake! It tastes very creamy! After our dinner, Julie, Jackie, Cristina and I went to shop for our laundry supplies. We visited the laundry room, which I found very scary to go alone. Then I got to hear Jackie's wonderful piano playing on a grand piano within John Jay's Lounge. When I got to my room I met up with some friends, and one of them led me to her friend's suite. It is still a small world in New York, since I had already met with 2 of the 4 girls in the room. It was fun simply chatting about our lives as we nibbled on a late night snack.

Tomorrow is going to be July 4th, and I wonder what wonders New York City will have for me then!


Charles Tillman Ramsey said...

Great pictures, Gina looks cool in the sunglasses. I also like the second picture, it appears that each of you are relaxed and enjoying your time at Columbia. However, it is clear that the humidity and heat are evident on all of their faces. I also wonder why Gabriel is always in the middle of all the photos. You will have to tell me one day.

Jessica, you have had two summers on the East Coast. I am thrilled that you gave us your analysis about the difference between Columbia and Brown. We need to understand how you perceive the settings and the institutions. Continue to take us "inside the walls" and give us more information that we can share with future ILC students.

One thing that I would find helpful is how do we our students from El Cerrito High School compare with the students who are enrolled in your class? Are they as serious about their studies back home as the students that you have met while at Columbia? Further, which environment is a fit for you? Do you see yourself at a school in a small city or do you like the hustle and bustle of New York City? I would value your reply to these questions.

Please also have a great Fourth of July. This is our national holiday and I want you to have a great time with the other students.

Take care.

Charles T. Ramsey, Esq.
School Board Member
West Contra Costa
Unified School District

Don Gosney said...


I KNEW I could count on you to slip I a few nice photos. And this time they include the smiling faces of our ILC team (end even the sleeping face of our Pinole contingent).

You gave us a great analysis of some of the differences between Brown and Columbia and I think you for that. We can’t just compare what happens in the classrooms at different schools. This is the place where you’ll be living for the next four years and you have to live somewhere where you’re comfortable and enjoy the area.

Study hard and continue to have fun every chance you get.

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