Tonight, I got my first real dose of my journey to life at Cornell. I was given the amazing privilege to meet and dine with future Cornelians and Cornell alums left and right.
The event began at around 5:20 PM, when we were to all meet at the El Cerrito Plaza BART station.
When we arrived at One Market, I was amazed at how friendly everyone was. When Don said that everyone at the dinner was your friend, he was 100% accurate. Because we had a bit of time before we actually sat down for the dinner, my cohort and I were able to chat with Carolyn, a former Cornell graduate. We were able to ask her any questions we had about Cornell--from how rigorous the classes were to whether they had a strong Marching Band or not.
As I walked into our reserved room, I was surrounded by such experienced and extremely knowledgeable scholars. Along with my mother and another parent, sitting at my table also included Cornell alum Jorge Lee, our Cornell chaperone Mr. Alfredo Chan-Law, as well as upcoming Cornell freshman Eric Wang. By conversing with them, I was able to learn a lot about not only pre-college program life but also actual college life at Cornell as well.
For dinner, I chose the vegetarian selection on the menu--and it turned out to be absolutely delicious. The food was amazing, and dessert was just perfect.
School Board President and Ivy League Connection Co-Founder Madeline Kronenberg opened the dinner by introducing everyone attending the event. I was able to meet alums, future Cornell students, donors, supporters, and benefactors of the Ivy League Connection. Ms. Kronenberg then gave the stage to the various chosen speakers for the night: my cohort members Rochelle Yee (Hotel Management) and Christian Abraham (Freedom and Justice), Eric Wang, and several of the benefactors. I was also able to witness an equally insightful and inspirational speech by ILC Co-Founder Charles Ramsey. From his wise words, I was able to take a lot away from it. When he spoke of how one can never get anywhere without help, and therefore should return the kindness and give back, I suddenly realized just how lucky and grateful I am to have been given this one in a lifetime chance opportunity to attend an Ivy League Pre-College program--all expenses covered. Mr. Ramsey also told us that when people think that they have achieved success because they earned it, they are only thinking of themselves. And instead, he urged us to think less of ourselves and more of the people who actually got us where we are today.
I am truly grateful to have so many resources and sources of information being to accessible. Tonight was definitely a night of learning, a great experience, along with great company.