Saturday, July 11, 2009

Good-Bye Brown

The time has just flown by, we're all packed and ready to leave tomorrow afternoon. I have gained so much from this experience, more then I'd think I could attain in just three weeks. I mean it was a similar experience as last year, but that extra week just makes it feel more lasting. I feel that I have truly grown a lot and learned to become more independent. Like they say, the bird has finally left the nest. Even though I'll come back, I know what it's like to be out there without my parents.

Independence is a key quality for students how attend colleges far away from home. You can't go home and have mom cook for you; you're on your own. I'm able to say that I can handle being away and can depend on myself. Being in this program has changed me for the better. That's what every student needs, a little independence. Without it they won't be able to survive. I think that is what holds some students, in my school, to nearby Universities instead of Ivy Leagues and colleges on the East Coast. They have to know that it's okay to be on their own, and all of the students in the ILC are perfect examples. We all have to reach out and get the timid students to step out of their comfort zones, so they can see that there are other choices out there.

Multiple students enter college without ever having the chance to experience the college life. I was in the Introduction to Psychology and human Behavior class, and let me tell you, we didn't have regular high school reading. I think the hardest part for most students is the jump from regular high school to the rigorous college work. Being at Brown gave me the opportunity to see just how big of a jump it would be, I mean I'm sure there was more homework to it, but it was definitely a different amount of reading. College life isn't only the homework, it' being able to balance our time and living in dorms, you just have to be multi-talented. Living in the dorms gave me a look at how close everyone gets and just how hectic it gets when five people want to shower at the same time. But it's in the dorms where you bond with others and learn to depend on them in one way or the other. The most difficult part is learning to balance your time between work and social events. At first it was really hard to adjust to, but once I got it down I was able to do a lot more. That's just what's so great about living on a college campus, you get to see into the future and gain skills that you have otherwise.

I was given the opportunity to change and become a better person, whether it was becoming independent or living the college life. Now I want to go back and make sure my peers are aware of this program and the wonders it can do for you! It would be like I was mentoring them in some way. Everyone is capable of doing anything if they are given a chance, and that's what students at Richmond High need, a chance. And of course with the help of programs like the ILC they will be able to succeed. Thank you everyone who has made this trip possible. I am extremely grateful; I've learned so much more then I would have at Richmond High. It also opened my eyes to all these colleges which is just as good as the UCs, I'm very proud to say that I have been there and done that. Thank you once again!


Charles Tillman Ramsey said...


Your post brought a smile to my face. You have truly gained your independence. No longer are you a follower, you are a leader. With every strike of the key pad it announces that you have arrived and that you are ready to tackle the challenges that await you next year as a Freshman in college.

I am happy that you spent lunch with Mercedes Domenech and learned about the Brown Admission process. Your conviction and confidence in applying to Brown this fall is a plus. I hope that you apply Early Decision. Brown is a fit for your talents and you need to study with the best.

I am very pleased because you took my advice and strengthened your posts. I finally heard the real Gina Saechao. Thank you, thank you, thank you for being open and willing to share your unbridled joy. I feel good about where your future will lead you and now you can return to Richmond High School and motivate your peers to strive for the very best.

Enjoy the last 48 hours of your time in Providence. The return home will be bittersweet. Nonetheless, it is always great to see family and they will very happy to see you at home.

Take care.

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

Madeline Kronenberg said...


I am so happy that you have had this opportunity because you have used it wisely to grow.

When you think about your peers -- think not only of their being a part of the ILC, but also of how you can share your new insights with everyone. As you said, everyone is capable if given a chance. Now is the time for each of your friends to be proactive about finding that chance -- there is a chance, an opportunity, out there that is right for each of them. But they need to seek it out -- and keep seeking until they find the right fit.

Welcome home.

Don Gosney said...


Independence for you parents is something that every student needs—and every parents need to allow—long before they’re ready to head off to college.

We see so many of our kids from the WCCUSD—and even within the ILC—where the parents simply do not—will not—let go. They ask if they can come visit their kids while they’re back east. Sometimes the kids sneak off campus to visit with their folks. Some parents flat refuse to let their kids participate I the ILC saying that they’ll never allow their kids to go off to college.

Attending college is such a shock to the system, Gina, that a student doesn’t need any more pressure than that. Adding to that having to deal with living on their own for the first time and doing some of the common household chores just adds to the burden and can bend the bough to the point of breaking.
I am still amazed at how many 17 year old students I’m seeing that don’t know how to load their own laundry, don’t know how to heat up a can of soup, don’t know how to manage their time so they can get themselves fed and go to school on the same day.

Parents need to let go. In fact, part of the parenting process should be training their kids so when they leave the nest they’ll be fully prepared.

This is your second go round back east with the ILC program, Gina. Just how prepared are you? I’m betting that t a large extent you have it all dialed in but even then I’m betting that a part of you likes the stability and comfort of the home you’ve come to know.