Sunday, June 30, 2013

Under Locke and Key

As I sit on my bed typing my daily blog, I cannot help but smile as my roommate and my classmate watch and analyze videos of belly button piercings. They are only two of the many good people  have met since leaving the Bay Area, and their optimism cheers me up after reading sixty pages of political theory. After spending yesterday exploring, I resolved to spend today diligently working. I spent my day studying, eating, studying, protecting my classmate's laundry, running out for snacks, and more studying. Spending the day inside of an empty dorm room reading monotonous scriptures from John Locke's Second Treatise of Government promotes a certain level of nostalgia and inner reflection. 

Ready for work!

The Ivy League Connection truly is a door to opportunity, and I will be eternally grateful for everything the program and its sponsors, supporters, and especially administrators have done for me and my fellow ILCers. Without the ILC, I would still be an immature and shy student who limited contact with others and hesitantly spoke in class. I not only talk with the other students at Cornell, but I approach them with a smile. I have met many interesting people, and even today while walking through Target I was stopped by a middle-aged father who pointed out the University of Chicago shirt I was sporting. His college son watched our conversation somewhat awkwardly, unsure if he should go on or wait for his father. The latter was a kind man who asked if I was a student at UChicago, and I jovially explained that I had bought the shirt during a college visit. He went on to ask me if I was interested in attending UChicago, if I was planning on attending a larger school, what colleges I was interested in, and I was more than happy to answer his questions. at the end of the exchange he wished me luck on my journey. I thanked him and continued on my search for snacks, energized at having met yet another kind soul in this foreign land. 

During the initial days of the Cornell University Summer Program, I felt slightly inferior to the other students, some of which had attended several other similar programs at Duke, Georgetown, and other high ranking universities. Many of my classmates were bright students, but while some were slightly arrogant, I soon found that these people were just like me: students striving for success. Most of the students on campus are outgoing and genuinely friendly, and positively open-minded. During discussions everyone speaks to share their opinions and hear feedback, and now I consistently share my thoughts without fear of being wrong. 

I used to hesitate to speak in class in fear of saying the wrong answer, but now I realize that I do not have to say the right answer all the time. I am here to learn, and to learn, I have to prove myself wrong so I can remember the right answer, and even in philosophy when there is no right answer, the class depends on an exchange of different ideas and perspectives. 

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