The night of the school board meeting (yes, THE school board meeting) had to be one of the most nerve-wrecking experiences of my life. Spring season finally hit me and decided to hit me on a very important day. My eyes were extremely inflamed and it was quite difficult for me to see anything clearly. Regardless of this unanticipated dilemma, I was determined to show up.
As my dad and I drove into the parking lot, billions of thoughts began scrambling in my head: "Am I too overdressed?" "This is going on television!" "Allergies, please cooperate with me."
Upon our arrival, however, my anxieties gradually eased. Once I found my cohorts seated together, I knew that everything wouldn't be as bad as I had imagined. Very patiently, we waited for our turn to go forth and present ourselves. When our time finally came, we lined up as Ms. Timmes introduced us as the 2012 Brown II Cohort. One by one, our names were called. One by one, we received applause and recognition. It was an amazing feeling to be honored in such a way.
After each cohort was presented, Austin Long and Terilyn Chen delivered speeches that were nothing but absolute motivation to me. Two ordinary students from this ordinary community rising up to do the extraordinary. Then came the ILC sponsors whom I cannot thank enough for making this privileged experience possible for students like us. I soon realized that our community does have the capability of coming together with a common goal -- to help create a brighter future for the next generation. I promise myself that someday, I will be a part of that rising community. Or maybe I already am.
Taking the group photo felt surreal to me as I daydreamed about the near future. It's only down to a month now before we take off to Brown University. A bit overwhelming of a thought it may seem, but it is the reality that I must face.
One more month.