12 ILC Brown I Reflection
I became interested in the Ivy League Connection primarily because of the overall experience for the students. The Brown I group got to visit four other Ivy League universities; Wesleyan, Yale, Dartmouth, and MIT as well as a brief look at the towns and cities where these schools are located. This gave the students a chance to compare and contrast different schools and communities. Most of the students had never been to the New England part of the country before. This was a totally new experience for them. I wanted to be there and help them get the most of this special experience in their life.Our group of “Brown I” students traveled well together. In fact they did everything well together. Everyone in the group contributed to the experience. The girls found a nice little café for breakfast a couple short blocks from our hotel. We ended up eating there a couple of mornings. If we somehow got split up on campus tours, like at Yale. The students would get together after the tour and compare notes and perceptions. What information did one tour pick up that the other tour group didn’t?
The luncheons and dinners with students, alumni and admissions people gave our students an inside look at four different colleges. MIT was an orientation and tour only. Our students got to hear from current students about student life and experiences. Admissions personnel explained their college philosophy was and what type of student the different colleges were looking for. Our students learned that college admissions people were looking students that would fit at the school. Our students also heard that if they were turned down by a college, this did not mean the student was not college material, but that the admissions people thought you would fit in better somewhere else. This was also mentioned by current students during lunch. As a student at Dartmouth said during lunch, she was so happy she had been turned down by Columbia and accepted by Dartmouth where she is very happy.
One night as the students sat around in their room and blogged about that day’s tour, I listened as they exchanged information. As they blogged, they would ask each other about different points or the name of a person or something that was said and items of interest to them.
The luncheons and dinners changed my opinion of most of the colleges. The personal contact with administration and students gave all of us a personal insight to the school.
I enjoyed reading the blogs and seeing how the students develped, adjusted and matured from the start of this adventure. I was impressed with how much they were learning both in and out of the classroom.
There is a significant advantage to the dual chaperon system. Mrs. Kaplan and I had a great system when we arrived for a tour. I would drop her and the students off, and then I would go find a parking spot and catch up with them later. If our group got separated into two groups while on tours, Mrs. Kaplan would be with one group and me with the other. Good system. I enjoyed the experience and working with the students and Mrs. Kaplan.John Crosby