Sunday, June 28, 2009

A Late Start

The Alumni Brunch took place today at 11 AM. Unfortunately for me, that was the time that I woke up this morning. Thankfully, I was able to get down to the Maddocks Alumni House in 10 minutes. I attribute it mostly to the fact that I got the full-windsor tied probably the fastest I've ever done it, and on the first try too, perfect length and everything.

In any case, the brunch was extremely helpful to me. Along with Joseph, I was able to speak to Elizabeth Hart, the Assistant Director of Admissions. Joseph asked many questions that I'm glad to have listened to the answers to. The most useful to me was her answer to the question of whether or not Brown's open curriculum works for everyone. She was able to explain how the open curriculum allows students to, outside of their concentration, take classes that interest them. It promotes learning for the sake of learning, rather than learning to fulfill a requirement.

Also, I really enjoyed her explanation of how to decide to double major or not. Once we get into college, we should make a list of all the courses outside our first major we want to take. If the list we make has a bunch of classes that would fulfill a second major, then we should go for it. If not, than stick with one.

One other thing I gleaned was during the presentations. Our last speaker challenged us to write on an index card:
1) What we plan do do with our education, basically, our goal
2) Who do we want to affect with our goal
3) Why we want to achieve this
4) A timeline of where we want to be 5, 10, and 20 years from now.

She had shared her story of growing up as a minority student who had experience with both the urban school and the more suburban school; she told us about the questions she had about why there were fewer minorities in the AP classes that she herself was able to take. From there she continued to go on and explain that this exercise she was showing us was to give us the opportunity to analyze our aims and later on, be able to remind ourselves of why we go to college, why we try our hardest to learn and grow, and why, in the end, is it all worth the effort.

I wasn't able to share my card at the program and well I'll share it here: I want to touch lives globally; I want to be able to change peoples lives and improve how people live. Something like public health, non-profits like UNICEF, the UN, or becoming a doctor that travels. I want to be able to help others, and this where I differed from a lot of my peers who wanted to change their community, I wanted to change the world. It's kind of a pretentious goal in my opinion sometimes, I wonder if I'll be able to do all that.

And so why? Why such a high goal? It's because I want to be able to use my abilities to help others. I've always enjoyed serving others and working directly with people. At this point of my life, I figure that I have an ability to enrich lives and work with others well now, why not make it a larger goal of mine.

Finally, the timeline. 5 years from now, I expect myself to be in college or graduating college. In 10 years, I hope to be working in the field, traveling and working with communities. In 20 years, well, I hope to have settled down, traveling less and working more in an office or headquarters type environment, heck maybe even have a family. It's funny thinking about it, because it's so far ahead and subject to so much change. That's what I'm worried about, I've made known what I want to do now and to the public, and if it changes, well what will people think of it? My thought about that is well, aim for the stars, because even if you miss, you'll have at least landed on the moon. I think that as long as I end up somewhere I want to be, it'll be great.

Brunch & Wellesley

I've come to learn that in life nothing comes easy, I've learned that in order to succeed one must go out and do what needs to be done without relying too much on solely one person, yet we have to make connections with people in order to succeed. Hearing the speeches today got me thinking more in depth about my future, and what my goals are for the next 5,10,15,and even 20 years. Today as I was talking to Mercedes Domenech I learned something about myself....that even though I do not like Brown's open campus I do love the fact that they provide a program in which one is guaranteed medical school here at Brown and that is a resource that I want to take advantage of.

Walking in the Wellesley campus was incredible! Not just because of the astounding architecture and being surrounded by nature but because of the vibe it gave off. It was a place in which I could see myself reading a book or doing homework next to the lake and walking through the narrow staircase to class. Just a place in which I can be relaxed but not isolated from the world either. The school is strong in science which is something that I'm looking for in a school apart from it being small (there are only 2,000 students in the school) and the school providing studying abroad programs. Wellesley definitely fits into the spectrum of the type of schools I am looking for.

Thank you,
Carla J. Ramirez

Interesting Day

As I explained in my last blog Tiffany and I went to orientation. After orientation we had brunch with alumns and admissions officers. That brunch sure was something different. I have never had brunch with new fancy types of foods in a fancy room haha. It was overall interesting. The thing that had me thinking the most was when we went over what would we like to do with our leadership skills. Everyone had different ideas, but basically the same concept. I want to be able to help kids find opportunities such as the ILC (or any organization or opportunity) and let it be known to more people. With great opportunities such as this people can have chances to go to different places and experience a completely different life. Ever since I arrived here I felt like I was living the rich life and I actually feel like im in college and learning what I have to do to make it in the world. I want to enlighten younger crowds so that they can take advantage of these things earlier than I had so that they can experience more of it. After the brunch I went out and met my roommate who is a pretty cool guy whose name is ganeu which rhymes with canoe haha, and he's from south korea. I got to chill with my RA's today and got to know who everybody on my floor is and what they are all about. So far I only saw two football players other than myself, and everyone seems to know about sports. We also played a fun card game that let us all bond more, but the girls had to kick us out of the lounge and ruin our fun. But overall this day was interesting. This world is different than my usual one.


This is the chapel at Wellesley.

This is Harvard.
The building shown here is a dining hall.
The interior is really gorgeous and antique looking.

This is the Statas building at M.I.T.
It has a really unique structure to it.
Also, they have yellow water in the toilet instead of clear.
I find that quite interesting.
Eric told us it has some biological effect to it.

This is M.I.T.
We were standing on the lawn where graduation is held each year.
Right across from this building is the Charles River.

This is at Tufts University.

Brunch at the Maddock Center

This morning, after waking up to the blaring of my alarm clock, I ran into the shower, shaved, and got ready for our second formal event of the trip. I put on my slacks, my shiny shoes and a tie in order to look as swank as possible. Then, I headed across the street to the Maddock Alumi Center

We began with introductions, and then collected our food. There was an amazing spread of quiche, frittata, bacon, blueberry french toast, fruit, and other delectable goodies—not to mention plenty of coffee.

I was fortunate enough to sit next to Elizabeth Hart, Associate Director of Admission. She spent the brunch answering my questions. "Is the Open Curriculum a good fit for everyone" "What kinds of undergraduate research opportunities are there." She was able to answer every question asked, usually with an anecdote of some student she had met, and with each answer, it became more clear.

Brown is the place for me. Its opportunities for travel, community service project funding, limitless (well 2000) courses and much more.

Until next time,
Joseph Young

Brunch and Wellesley

I was happy that I got to sleep in this morning until 10 in which I woke up to get dress for the brunch with the alumni. Ten out of the eleven students were there early, thus we were ON time. It was a really nice brunch; there was a wide range of variety but not enough room at the table. However, I see this as a good sign because it shows that the Ivy League Connection program is improving. Word is getting out to other students who would like to join us on our wonderful journey in the east coast.

I found the brunch to be very informative. I did not know that Brown does not offer minors. They only offer double majors. It does not change completely change my view but now I have to think twice about it. I do want to double major but I heard that it is very challenging so I decided that I wanted to go a major and a minor instead of double major. Brown does not do that though. But I really love that Brown has an open curriculum and I really enjoy the atmosphere. People have told me that if the college is right for you, you will feel it right away. I feel that Brown can be that fit for me. It is the vibe and energy that I receive from Brown that seems to pull me in.

I had to make a speech today. Public speaking is not my idea of making time pass. I was nervous and worried that it will be a rough speech. However, I thought about it. I went from this shy and timid girl to a person who can stand up at the podium and deliver a speech. Even though I stumbled and stuttered along the way, at the end of the day, the real deal is that I gained the courage and confidence to go up and speak. This is one of the reason why I chose to come back to Brown. Last summer, Brown challenged me. It was capable of turning me into the kind of leader that I have pictured myself to be and so I decided to come and face that challenge again.

After the dinner, four of the females (me, Gina, Courtney, and Carla) went to visit Wellesley with Ms. Kronenberg, Ms. Kent, and Mr. Ramsey. We had a difficult time navigating to Wellesley but we did reach our destination. When we arrived, there was a woman, Moira, who was kind enough to give us a private tour of Wellesley. I am glad that I went on the tour because now I know that I do not want to attend Wellesley. There is that slight notion for me to at least apply because it can be my back door to M.I.T. because Wellesley work closely with M.I.T. I will only attend Wellesley ONLY for that purpose. The campus is of course extremely BEAUTIFUL because it is integrated into nature but walking through the campus, I figured out that I am a city girl. I like the bustle in the city; not the mellowness of the rural areas.

Well, I really should be getting to my work. I have to read 80 pages and email a reaction paper to our TA by 11:59 pm tonight.

I also found out that it is extremely difficult for me to load my pictures to my computer.

A Wonderful Day

Last night I got in from a long trip from California, I got to see a little bit of Boston. When I got to Providence I got to check in and meet with the other students. Then we went to Mills Tavern which was really great, we had some wonderful conversations about the school district and how we felt about the CASHEE test. It was great to he every one's opinion on it, I heard some really great sides on how people feel about it.

This morning I started out real early with my registry. Then I went to the wonderful brunch at 11. Not only did I have wonderful food, I had great conversation's with the Brown alumni. I learned a lot about the school and the classes here. I didn't know that once you get accepted into the school you can't get rejected from the medical part of the school.
Tehani(alumni) really got me to thinking about what I'm going to do after I graduate from college. She got me to think about the goals and accomplishments I want to have. Example: Like what am I going to bring back to my community. What type of impact will I have on the kids from my district. I want to thank her for having us do that activity it was very useful.

Word of the Day: CONNECTION

Today at eleven o'clock all of the members of the Ivy League Connection at Brown University reunited with Brown Alumni Guy at the Maddock Alumni Center for Brunch. I have got to say not only was it Delicious but very informative. During the Brunch I talked to a Brown undergraduate senior named Adrienne Buell. She is a student at Brown whom came from Monterrey, California and she told me about her life and I noticed how it was similar to mine. She too came from a Hispanic family with one parent. She shared her experiences at Brown with me and told me about all the different clubs and organizations at Brown that are for and by Latino students.

This one aspect about Brown has driven me closer to the school. Just knowing that I will not feel homesick while being at Brown is comforting. I learn knew things everyday that in the long run will really help me and benefit me in choosing what colleges I want to go to.
Also there were a couple of speeches given today and they all had something to do with. This program is about learning from others and us teaching others.

To make a connection based on what we learned to help one another. That's why I believe I'll be able to go back to Richmond and share what I have learned this past week and what I will learn these following weeks here at Brown.

Mercedes Montelongo

Oh So Tired

What to say what to say. Yesterday was such a long day. Tiffany and I arrived at about 4 o'clock in Boston and took a train down here to Providence. I was asleep most of the time, but while I was awake there was a good view of the city. Last night we all met up and had dinner at Mill's Tavern and it was very delicious. I had the rack of lamb with mash potatoes and chocolate cake. The discussion we had last night about the "Do you think they should walk" thing was very interesting. Everyone had their own views, but in the end everyone agreed that if you didn't meet all the requirements for high school including passing the exit exam, then the student shouldn't be able to walk. Other then that it was an interesting night and my floor is pretty quiet, maybe it's because i'm an early arrival haha. I stay in Harkness and currently do not have a roommate. This morning Tiffany and I spent a good hour walking in circles trying to find Sayles so we could get our id's and class scheduels. I hope tomarrow will be something different, and i am looking forward to brunch in an hour!

What a day

Woke up this morning early to go to Boston. We spent the drive fighting with the GPS, which consistently gave us different directions then Mr. Ramsey's car. Weird.

We arrived at Tufts, and started our self guided tour. The campus was beautiful, full of green lawns, trees, and old brick buildings. We stopped to talk to a Bio Major who was studying frogs over the summer, and we talked to another woman who was entering the occupational therapy program, which is supposed to be one of the best in the country. Other than that, however, the campus was deserted.

Next, we went on to MIT, where a Hercules High Alum gave us the insiders tour. MIT was the most interesting campus that we visited. I particularly liked how the schools main focus, math and science, was incorporated into the architecture. There was a building who's roof was one eighth of a sphere, all supported at two points. Then, there was the Strata Center for electrical engineering and computer science, designed by world renowned Frank Gehry. This multifaceted building was composed entirely of shapes that could be made by folding one piece of paper.

When we left MIT, we traveled over to Harvard, to meet another Hercules Alum. First we went to Harvard Yard (pronounced "Hahvahd Yahd") and continued on to the freshman dining hall, which was one of the most beautiful buildings I have ever seen. The inside was filled with ornate wood work, imposing brick, and stained glass windows.

We came back to Providence, driving through the most intense rain storm I've been in for a while, and then, just as abruptly as the rain started, the sun came out. When we got back to our dorms, I took a quick nap before heading out to dinner at Mill's Tavern.

The discussion was lively, focusing on our impressions of the colleges (it was very interesting to see how even though many of us come from similar backgrounds, we are all looking for such different things. Courtney liked Tufts because it was removed from the city, giving it a quaint atmosphere, while I disliked it for those exact reasons.)

Then we shifted the topic to the CAHSEE, where peoples view points differed even more. However, I don't think the table ever came to a consensus. Tomorrow, we have the brunch with the Brown Alumni.

Until then,
Joseph Young

exploring colleges!

Tufts. MIT. Harvard. Completely different vibes from all the schools! But my top schools are by far Tufts and Harvard. Even though we had an excellent tour guide and there are all these cute little details about the school like the 30-60-90 building and the S3(cubed) building MIT is extremely rigorous in math which is by far not my strong point. Harvard just has amazing architechture and gives off a great vibe, I can imagine myself attending there. The freshmen dinning hall which also doubled as the civil war memerial to honor the men who fought to preserve the union was breath taking! Tufts, the small campus was very welcoming even though there was virtually nobody in the campus. Talking to the students helped change my mind about Tufts. The school grew on me as the self-guided tour continued.
Having the chance to visit Brown University is amazing but also getting the chance to look at colleges around the area is even more incredible. I can't wrap my head around the idea of actually attending one of these schools in about another school year. I just want to say thank you for proving us with the opportunity to visit these three colleges.

Carla Ramirez