Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
I was thrilled with the outcome of everyones speeches. Henry Hung led, and I spoke last but certainly not the least. Each of us opened with our program, what it offers, what elementary and middle school we came from and more importantly, our immeasurable interest in the ILC program. Once again, everyone did a splendid job and represented well.
Unfortunately, Mr. Ramsey and Ms. Kronenberg were unable to hear our speeches because of other activities to attend to, but let me reassure both of you that we delivered in an outstanding manner!
Monday, April 26, 2010
Sunday, April 25, 2010
The food at the restaurant was magnificent and the speeches from Megan and Irene were great. Thanks to all the supporters again, especially Mr.Ramsey, Mrs.Kronenbrg and Don for your dedications and contributions to ILC. Without you, we would never get such a wonderful opportunity to participate in this awesome event and to even get to know more about Brown University.
Saturday, April 24, 2010
The ILC dinner this past Thursday was a total success. I really enjoyed meeting so many people and I would like to thank everyone who worked to make this event so memorable and special for everyone including our parents. I just feel so much more excited of going to Brown now that I got the chance to talk to so many people who have already visited the East Coast. Many of these same people gave me advice concerning how my stay will be and what I will need to bring. The food was just delicious and the speakers at the dinner were great. I would like to congratulate both Megan and Irene for their wonderful speeches, they said so many things that I too feel and agree with. The talking at the dinner was nonstop and it continued onto the Bart as well. My mother and I even got some really pretty flowers to take home, which I find was a really nice gift. I really liked the people that I sat with during the dinner, among them was Antonio Medrano, a school board member who congratulated all of us for our courage to take on this challenge and for representing our district so well. There was just so much to say and so much to hear that the night practically flew by and no one noticed that it was around ten o'clock by the time we actually left Jardinière and began our walk back to the Bart. Now I just anticipate the next meetings one in May where we will be presented to the School Board and the other in June which is our Orientation . We are almost there!!
Friday, April 23, 2010
The food at Jardiniere was exceptional. All of the dishes I had possessed many delicious and intricate qualities in them. The only problem was the I had a little too many cocktails (non-alcoholic of course) and I felt "drunk" in a way. The service was great and I pleasantly enjoyed the meal.
Recap: 1. Awesome dinner. 2. Great meeting with the Brown family. 3. Had fun. 4. Was on a sugar rush from the cocktails until 1 in the morning. All in all, last night's dinner was a bomb. Hope to have more in the future. Till next time.
We spoke with one another while eating and sharing personal experiences. Mr. Medrano and Mr. Vilar really encouraged me to continue trying my best in everything so I can go really far in life and come back to help my community. It was great. Everyone seemed as excited as I was to be there. I had so much fun getting to know new people.
We all introduced ourselves to each other and said from which school we were. I was amazed to hear that so many adults there had been previous staff at Richmond High School. It was so much fun. I wish I could have heard everything in the speeches that were given, but it was a little hard to hear. However, I did manage to hear a large part of the speeches. Everyone did a fantastic job. Megan and Irene were wonderful!
Overall, it was a very memorable experience. The night went by so quickly! Our walk to and from Bart was great too. I was able to speak with Don Gosney and many others. I am so happy to be part of such a great program in where everyone is really friendly. I can’t wait to visit Brown and build strong friendships and connections with everyone.
Afterwards, I talked with Cherie about how the view of women changed over time from the 1820s to the present. Dawn Atwater, sitting next to me, shared stories about having to wear a girdle because it was the social norm and even required for her job. It was so interesting to learn about this firsthand from people who had experienced it.
I also heard about someone who is on her way to doing something very different from the social norm. It turns out that Madeline Kronenberg's daughter is planning to go to university in Medellín, Colombia. That's a funny coincidence, because my dad is from Colombia and my mom studied for many years there. Ms. Kronenberg said that one positive thing that had come out of her daughter's decision was that her daughter had learned to pursue what she wanted, even though many people she told about it were shocked and thought she was a little "nutty".
I also met Peggy, who knows the joys and difficulties of being a student athlete. She encouraged me to investigate later whether or not I will be allowed to bring my figure skates to Brown so I can train on the university's ice surface during the three weeks I will be there. I would love to skate on that ice; I really hope I will be allowed to train there.
On the ride back, I had a great time talking to Sue from Pinole Valley High School. I told her what my favorite classes were and why I liked them the best. I have so many favorite classes that I have only a vague idea of what my career path might be. She reminded me that in the future, there may be jobs that don't even exist now, and that it's good that I keep an open mind. Several people, in fact, advised me to take my time with important decisions like majors and careers, because they know the full consequences of not thinking twice.
Everyone that I talked to assured me that I would love Brown. Every time I attend an event with the Ivy League Connection, I feel more lucky and grateful that I can go through with the program. Thank you very much to everyone who made this dinner possible. It's just amazing to know that people care about us and want us to experience the best things life has to offer. Thank you for the opportunity to network and make connections with alums, staff, parents, students, and other contributors to the program. I hope everyone enjoyed this night as much as I did!
P. S. About a week ago, several ILC students, including myself, attended a college admissions information session led by Ms. Sue Kim! We received a binder that contains all the information, recommendations, and requirements related to going to college. She let us know that she will be here to help us throughout the college admissions process and encouraged us to set up individual meetings. I am so happy that I will have a priceless resource in the dedication and knowledge of Ms. Kim, in addition to the great counseling and College-Career Center staff at El Cerrito HS.
P. P. S. I apologize for not always remembering people's full names or their correct pronunciations. I met so many people yesterday that it was hard to keep the names all matched up in my head. Even if I don't remember your name correctly at the moment, I still remember the conversations we had and the wonderful night we shared. Hopefully we will be able to cement the initial connections that we made yesterday evening.
Thursday, April 22, 2010
The presentations went very well although at times it was difficult to hear everything that the speaker was trying to say. It became a difficult task to really pay attention. Thankfully, I got to hear many things, including Irene's and Megan's speeches (which were really awesome!) and also the Brown alumni. It proceeded through the night very smoothly and very quickly I would say. Most importantly, it was a wonderful night.
Overall, I can say that this night has made me open my eyes to the many opportunities I have right at my doorstep. Of course, these possibilities would not be here if it weren't for great people like Mr. Ramsey (who taught me a valuable lesson today, I might add), the rest of the school board and everyone else who puts in their time and effort into our education and our development.
Again, I can't wait to visit Brown! It's just around the corner! I'm glad to be part of the WCCUSD, my community and my school.
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Monday, April 19, 2010
Furthermore, I would like to touch briefly on the meeting held Friday, April 16 at Pinole Valley High School with Sue Kim. If you are unfamiliar with Ms. Kim, she is a college counselor that is close-knitted to the ILC. She works closely with a handful of students each year, guiding each student and their families in the financial aid process and any other college-related matters. Since my sister worked with her as well, I have heard a lot about her- and how helpful she was in college finances.
I was very impressed with Ms. Kim's organization skills and expertise. She provided each participant with a binder swelled with college tips, cartoons, timelines, calendars, suggested dates, you name it! This binder will no doubt come in handy throughout junior and senior year. Ms. Kim has already set temporary dates for our next several meeting sessions. I look forward to working with her as I am positive she has a lot to offer.
Time has definitely flied by. It is already mid-April where STAR testing, subject testing, SAT (for some) and AP testing begins. This means that all of us will be too focused and drained off testing! This also means that studying at Brown is also drawing near! I will befriend different individuals from all parts of the world, study International Finances, establish a bond with my professor and residential leaders, and most of all explore and live on my own for a solid three weeks.
I cannot express my joy and appreciation for everyone who has contributed to my life-changing experience. Moments like these are truly remarkable and remembered for a lifetime.
Once again, I would like to thank all the sponsors, the WCCUSD Board Members, Ms. Ishmael, and especially the ILC team for their full support.
I look forward to seeing everyone on Thursday night!
It's really nice to know that we are offically approved to go to Brown this summer! Thank you to all of the WCCUSD school board members Ms.Kronenberg, Mr.Medrano, Ms.Miles, Mr.Ramsey, Mr.Thurmond and Dr.Harter for your support. Thank you for making ILC and the trip possible for us! This is going to be a great experience and I can't wait to fly to Brown with my fellow ILC members!
I am also looking forward to meeting everyone again this Thursday at ILC dinner at Jardiniere Restaurant in San Francisco. Again thank WCCUSD school board, including Mr.Ramsey and Don for making all these fabulous events possible for ILC!
Sunday, April 18, 2010
I feel so excited and I anticipate the day we will get on the plane on our way to Providence. At first the fact that I was going on this trip seemed so unreal to me, but now I know with much certainty that I am going, that this summer I will be at one of the most prestigious schools in the country and that I will be taking a class there and this would not be possible without the ILC. I feel like I am going to take picture after picture once I get there so that everyone can see what we all are going to experience.
Furthermore, I would like to comment on the session with Sue Kim that we had the past Friday at Pinole Valley High. I feel that it was very helpful and it has made me consider the benefits that small colleges do have to offer and the need to be careful with what we do from now on. I feel that with Sue Kim's help the whole process of applying to college is going to be much more comfortable for many of us and I thank her and the ILC for this.
I can sincerely say that in my perspective the ILC is an organization that really makes an impact in the lives of students in the WCCUSD and it would not be possible if it were not for Don, Mr. Ramsey, Ms. Kronenberg, and everyone else who forms part of it. Thank you all for all your hard work and for making this trip a reality for all of us.
Hope to see everyone at the upcoming dinner this week!
Friday, April 16, 2010
Go Brown Bears!
Yippee!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm going to Brown, I'm going to Brown, I'm going to Brown... I can't tell you how happy I am. My sister is getting annoyed at how much I brag about going to Brown. A few years back, I was a naive, little boy who didn't know a thing about college except that Harvard was only place to go if you wanted to be successful. Now, I just can't believe that I'm attending Brown and learning from a place among the top tier schools. I'm just excited and amazed. Anyways, I better calm myself down before I actually get annoying. Looking forward to the dinner next Thursday. In the meantime, take care.
I am so glad that the school board has given us the approval to go to Providence, Rhode Island. I would like to thank everyone for giving me this wonderful opportunity to experience new things. Once I received the email that we had been approved, I was so excited. I can not wait for my new learning adventure to begin this summer. I am so delighted that we have passed the last phase in the process to go to Brown University!
Once again, I would like to thank everyone who has made this trip possible. This has really encouraged me to continue trying my best. As soon as I read the email that said that the last phase to go to Brown had been passed, I thought to myself: “Wow this is really happening!” I was overjoyed. I am so eager to go to Rhode Island.
Thank you all for helping me get closer to achieving my goals!
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Ivy League Connections program as well as their approval of our upcoming trip
to Brown. The support of Mr. Antonio Medrano, Ms. Audrey Miles, Mr. Tony Thurmond, Ms. Kronenberg, Mr. Ramsey, Don, and Mr. Harter has sincerely made me grateful of being offered such an exciting and rewarding opportunity.
Although I was not thoroughly aware that the trip still had another test to pass, I am delighted to hear that it had passed its last phase. Writing those emails was a pleasure as it let me express my gratitude towards few of the many people who put their hard work and effort into providing experiences like this to other students. I love to acknowledge and thank those who provide an excellent service to students.
The confirmation of going to Brown has prompted me to reflect on my thoughts and goals of what I plan to do once I set foot in Rhode Island. I hope to further develop myself as a student leader and gain an understanding of distinguishable women in our history. And most importantly, I plan to take what I learn at Brown and apply to my life and community back here in Richmond.
I am very excited to be going to Brown! I can not wait!
The president of the college, Ruth Simmons, gave us a warm welcome tonight on the Main Green. We listened as she went on about the school, what Brown offered, what the students are like, and what they expected of us. She spoke about how Brown loves to foster curiosity in its students, and how you are encouraged to explore any and everything you've ever wondered about.
As she spoke, one could not help but notice the sincerity in her voice and in her smile. She believed in us, and I felt that. Not only was the president amazing, but the students who helped us get situation in Pembroke before the welcome session were very informative. I have not met one person here who does not love it, and I honestly do not expect to.
Earlier today, I was able to attend the STEM (Science Technology Engineering Math) program. The professors there were adorable beyond measure, with the type of humor only likeminded people could understand. The physics professor gave a lecture about levitating frogs (I kid you not). Where else but Brown?
Though the weather was amazing today, they were telling us to expect showers tomorrow. Rhode Island weather, how I missed you so.
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Upon my arrival, I took the Providence Shuttle to Brown and when I arrived, I met up with Elizabeth Gonzales, who agreed to host me.
They took us to the TWW dinner, and at the dinner, I got to socialize with students and professors. The food was good too.
All in all, today was a good day. I got to talk to many Brown students about their experience here at Brown, and they love it here. Everybody is enthusiastic (maybe because they're part of the program that's hosting a welcome, I don't know) and everybody seems to be happy, or content.
Good night =)
Though I will not be going to Brown this summer as a part of the ILC, I was a past participant of the program and I did go to Brown last summer.
Courtesy of the ILC, I was given the opportunit to visit Brown for ADOCH (A Day On College Hill) and TWW (Third World Welcome). I don't think it's necessary to describe the excitement welling up in the pit of my stomach (both from the prospect of visiting Brown and the fact that I get to miss another week of school to do it) but even if I were to try, my words would do my feelings no justice.
Even the foreboding thought of long flights and stopovers will not dampen my spirits.