Sunday, May 22, 2016

Connecting through BART and Dinner

The sponsor dinner was a lot different from what I expected but at the same time a lot better than I expected. The food was really different from what I was used to and the connections gave a lot of input on what to expect and how they were changed from going to an Ivy League. The trip started out with us going on El Cerrito Plaza BART and luckily catching a train that goes straight to San Francisco. I had finally received the chance to formally meet our chaperon, Mike, in person and got the chance to talk with him. He was really cool and I found out how he loves to travel and so it is really cool to be chaperoned by someone that has experience when it comes to traveling. 

In the train I was also talking with Joceline's sister who, although wasn't one of the ILC alumni, gave a ton of advice. One of the most helpful pieces of advice she gave was when she told me how since I would be able to go in as a junior to many colleges because of the dual enrollment credits I take at Contra Costa College, I should consider applying into the master's program at the school I attend so that instead of staying four years at a university and coming out with just the Bachelor's degree, I would stay four years and come out with my bachelors and my masters. This was extremely helpful because I hadn't even thought about getting a masters degree and so the information makes me push more and more towards getting it now that I know how convenient it would be for me. 

We had finally arrived at Kuleto's and the room that was reserved was really fancy. There was a 30 minute session for connecting and talking with each other and that's when Jesus Verduzco and Doug Mitarotonda, previous Cornell alumni, showed up and we got the chance to talk with them. Jesus Verduzco was the first of the two I talked with and I'm really happy I got the chance to do so. He was telling us so much about his experience at Cornell and how he majored in Engineering but does something completely different now and that we should really go with what makes us happy. I enjoyed talking to him because I am someone that is interested in the STEM field and am considering engineering at Cornell which has one of the best engineering programs in the world. However I am not sure if I really want to stay within that path so the fact that he does something else and is good at it was helpful because it taught me that I don't have to be limited in one option. 

The actual dinner finally started and we were seated. I was seated between Mr. Verduzco and Shanti, who was a previous Cornell ILC alumn. I asked Shanti many questions about Cornell and how it was and she talked a lot about the multiple things they were able to do there which really interested me because I am considering applying to Cornell and I wanted to also take advantage of the time I will be there to explore the campus and how I would like it. She really gave a lot more vivid images of Cornell and what to expect while I was there which is a lot more helpful than looking up biased videos about Cornell on their website. She was also helpful when she told me just in time that the Filet Mignon is not fish but steak and as someone that doesn't eat red meat, it was a very helpful catch. 

The dinner finally concluded after desert (which was AMAZING) and we ended up taking pictures with the Cornell seal making us official. We then left the Kuleto's and ended up on BART and luckily did not run into any angry Warriors fans. We arrived back at the El Cerrito Bart at exactly 10 PM. I can gladly say that I was really happy to go on this trip because I learned so much advice and a lot about not just ILC but when I apply for college. Especially related to the different routes I want to take in college. This dinner was able to open my eyes to many different routes and was also able to show me how Cornell can help me regarding this as well. 

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