Saturday, June 21, 2014

Our College Tour Comes to an End

Today was the last college tour for the Columbia cohort! I have mixed emotions about it. Mostly, I am happy that the long days and extensive campus tours are over, but I will miss the dinners and interacting with students , admissions officers, and alumni of the schools we have visited. To end the college tour portion of my ILC trip, we visited Princeton. Once getting out of the cab on campus and after taking a train to New Jersey, I saw Nassau Avenue. It was a street lined with restaurants, bookstores, and nice boutiques just outside of campus. It was lovely and Princeton has beautiful buildings that I was excited to explore. One of the buildings was located inside the Chancellor Green where the tour was taking place and has a beautiful library. I am a huge bookworm and once I saw the books and the large, open room, I fell in love. I explored and was so engrossed in a book that I din't even realize the tour left! I caught up with the group luckily and enjoyed the tour of stunning Princeton.
Standing outside of the Chancellor Green
Amazing library inside the Chancellor Green
A few things I liked about Princeton were the beautiful campus, its student involvement in extracurriculars like acapella, and peaceful setting. A few things I didn't like were the grading deflation (Princeton grades on a bell curve), the surrounding area which was not somewhere I could imagine spending my time outside of class, and the energy I got that the school focuses too largely on class. Although, it offers many great things and our tour guide Jennifer (a rising sophomore and computer engineering major) was very kind to spend lunch with us to answer a few of our questions, I could not imagine going to a school where eating clubs are a large focus and the classes are naturally competitive because of the bell curve grading system. I decided it was not my fit, but I know that the students going to Princeton, like Jennifer, love their school so I am happy that someone will benefit from the financial aid, setting, and education Princeton generously offers its students. 
Princeton's cathedral

Ivy covered building actually at an Ivy League University
After the emotionally moving tour, we took some pictures and headed to dinner at La Croix. To put it lightly, dinner was absolutely amazing with the best service I have ever gotten. It was nice for the dinner to be cohort exclusive. Well, not too exclusive because Ms. Thrift's friend, Stephanie who is a playwrite, visited us. She is very nice and offered insight about life in general through her interesting life stories. For example, she lived in New York for 25 years and Mexico for some time which sounds so fun! At the end of dinner, I took into account how grateful I am for my cohort, and the blessings I have received through this scholarship. But to be completely honest, the coolest thing about the trip thus far, was meeting Batman! I am extremely excited to move in to Columbia tomorrow and definitely have a great understanding of the type of university I would like to attend (the one that Batman is visiting preferably...). To New York in the morning!

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