Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Advice and Encouragement: A First Look at Cornell 2011

Hello, my name is Genevieve Simmons. I am a sophomore at El Cerrito High School that will be attending the Freedom and Justice program at Cornell this summer.

My first entry is going to be based on the dinner this previous weekend held to inform my fellow Cornellians and I of what to expect of this summer and how to prepare accordingly. All four students who attended the program last year were there to share their experiences with us, so I got to hear on a first-hand basis the best advice there is to be had.

The first thing that struck me was how articulate each of these students were, not only making it easier to understand what I needed to do to ready myself for this summer, but also inspiring me to look ahead to the future and how my public speaking might evolve to such a level after this ILC experience.

Study groups. We were assured these meetings to discuss our readings (our books were given to us that night, and not light reading either) were of the utmost importance and crucial to our success this summer. Homework would be mostly comprised of reading, so getting ahead of the game in this aspect is something I fully intend on taking advantage of, and am thankful for both the opportunity to do so and the advice given to me.

All the information on what to expect was very instructive. It qualmed any fears I had about problems I would face, and got me looking forward to summer even more. All the anecdotes about fun times there at Cornell, activities to be had on campus, and tips on what to do and expect fueled my excitement for this opportunity. I also got to meet my chaperone, Ms. Tiffani Neal, and am looking forward to getting to know her better as well.

The dinner was a great success in my eyes, especially as I looked around the table into the eyes of my fellow ILC Cornellians, reveling in the opportunity we had and were soon about to undertake together.

1 comment:

  1. Genevieve,

    Gatherings such as this can be very useful tools. Not only were you given information and sage advice from people who have gone through what you'll be going through but it gave you all a chance to bond in a setting outside of your regular environment at school.

    Plus, it gave your parents a chance to meet other parents in a social setting as well.

    Setting up a study group is going to be critical to your success. As you mentioned, this isn't light reading and your coming months are already filled with the kinds of things that young people do during the Spring. The weather turns nice and you want to enjoy your social life, you get to take your SATs and AP tests and you even have more ILC functions to attend. So how do you find the time to read Plato or the other philosophers? If you don't set up these study groups and establish a plan of attack, you could easily find yourself in a world of hurt where you have to read a gazillion pages in a very short time--and actually remember what you read.

    You're all going to have fun, Genevieve.