Tuesday, June 26, 2012

New Perspectives

My morning routine.
I've recently been waking up earlier than usual because I can't get back to sleep after waking up like I used to. Normally, my alarm would wake me up while I was dreaming about Candyland and bring me to reality. Speaking of which, I actually haven't seen any candy stores ever since I came to Providence. It's either I haven't been noticing, or people here in Providence take their dental advice very seriously and are smart enough not to get "cavities in a wrapper". Getting some Jolly Ranchers are officially on my to-do list. 

I left my dorm around 7:30 AM since that's when the dining room opens. I would usually walk with my party of four, but I was too lazy to have to wait for them. I'd already packed up the night before, so I was already set to leave. I still wasn't used to going to go to the new dining hall (that is actually closer to the Grad Centers). I really didn't mind the walk to the V-Dubb though because it's practically right next to my class. I sat down eating my french toast dipped in an insane amount of syrup and scrambled eggs while reading my Macroeconomics textbook. I realized that there is so much that you can learn on your own just by reading and that independent studying is possible. However, with Professor Coleman, you actually get more "real-life examples" that help you to understand the terms more. There are some things that you can't just explain from words on paper. And even so, it takes some guidance to be able to relate them to real-life application. Ms. Kaplan seemed to have enjoyed her visit to our class today as well. 

The amazing things you can accomplish in one week
I later went back to my room to get a head start on homework. There wasn't much progress, because I had to spend most of my time reading the book to understand the homework terms. A guy can only read so many words per minute. As I was putting the final touches on question 1, Nick called me and asked if Tayler and I wanted to go to Emily's dorm to do the homework together. Knowing how four minds are definitely better than one, I took up the offer and we continued doing our homework at Emily's till 5:45 PM. I would've tried to work longer, but we needed to start heading over to the Brown Partner Scholarships pizza party we got invited to.

The purpose of the pizza party was for Brown Partner Scholarship cohorts to get acquainted to each other. The Ivy League Connection, being one of the partner scholarships, were one of the "guests of honor" for the pizza party. We started off by mingling around with other brilliant scholars who are attending Summer@Brown with their tuition completely paid for, just like us. Some of these partners, besides the ILC, included the Joyce Ivy Foundation and Summer Search. Many of the cohorts had to go through  a rigorous acceptance process. However, none of them had anything close to ours. I realize even more now, that the Ivy League Connection is no regular partner scholarship. First of all, none of the cohorts there mentioned anything about having an interview to get into their program. Less than half of them actually had to write a total of two essays. Second of all, none of them actually had to come out for any public speaking. According to Asia (one of the partnership students) said the closest thing they had to interactions was having lunch at UPenn. Other the other hand, we had to present ourselves in front of the school board as well as addressing ourselves at a city council meeting. Third of all, none of them had any college tours. I think the college tours are one of the most unique aspects of our program because it constantly reminds us that there is so much to be offered in the east coast. I'm pretty sure that most of the students left that pizza party feeling pretty jealous.

The Ivy League Connection is so much more than an opportunity for me to go to Brown University, take courses there, and experience college life along the way. The Ivy League Connection is preparing me for the things I'd have to face in the near future. It's not how we get used to the idea that we have to share bathrooms and perhaps have annoying suite mates, but rather the knowledge you get out of it. For example, during the pizza party earlier this evening, we broke down into smaller groups and discussed some of the concerns/questions that students had. Some of the questions were like "need-based and need-blind" and financial aid concerns that I already knew the answer to. I didn't, however, know the answer to those questions until I got in the ILC. It was during the college tours and informational sessions where I learned the answer to those questions. This only further proves that everything we're doing in the ILC has a purpose. The blogs, the tours, and even the whole "waking up early and on-time" theme each play their own individual role for our growth as students. The Ivy League Connection is truly incomparable, and the most unique program of its kind.  Let there be no doubt that I am truly grateful to be part of this amazing experience. 

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