Finding My Identity: QuestBridge Scholar Harpreet Singh’s Path to Emory

Harpreet Singh, QuestBridge Scholar, Emory ’17

QuestBridge Scholar Harpreet Singh (Emory ’17) has come a long way since applying for the National College Match in 2012. Originally from New Jersey, Harpreet ended up finding his college fit with a school 800 miles away that he had hardly heard of before being accepted. But that’s just the beginning of Harpreet’s transformative journey…

Since starting the National College Match application, I would say a lot has changed about me. I would say my self-confidence has increased. I would say I no longer doubt who I am and what my potential is. I would say I take risks more often than before. I would say I am proud to be who I am: a first-generation low-income student at a top-tier college.

What truly catalyzed this transformation, you may ask? I would say QuestBridge.
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Dear QB: There are so many colleges out there. How do I find the “one” for me?

DearQBWith thousands of four-year colleges in the United States, it can be intimidating to know how to find the college that is the right fit for you academically, financially, and socially. The good news is that QuestBridge’s 39 college partners are all great options, and you can certainly find more than one that is a good fit. The key is to set goals, do your research, and stay organized. Let’s dive deeper into these three things…

Set Goals

Before you start searching for schools, take time to think about what you want to accomplish in college. You don’t have to know everything now, but thinking ahead will help when you start making college decisions. Continue reading

Q&A with a College Prep Scholar & QuestBridge Scholar – Kim Rosa

Kim-Rosa_Swarthmore (1)QuestBridge Scholars are known for their scholarship, leadership, and service, and Kim Rosa truly exemplifies each of these traits. Since becoming a College Prep Scholar in 2013, Kim has been a Quest Liaison, Quest Ambassador, Essay Coach, Group Leader, and — most recently — a Quest Intern! We sat down with Kim so she could pass along her advice to the next generation of QuestBridge Scholars:

Based on your experience applying to college through QuestBridge, do you have any advice for students heading into the National College Match?

Begin the National College Match application as soon as possible, even if you just log in to your application and read through the different prompts and requirements. Oftentimes it can be overwhelming to think about everything that needs to be completed, but if you begin early, you will have enough time to talk to your teachers about recommendations and you can begin to brainstorm your essay responses.

Do you have any tips for students who are just starting to research colleges?
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Take the Stress Out of Asking for Help

Mental health. These are two words that are not mentioned often in the lives of low-income students. Oftentimes, money is the first word that is mentioned in low-income families. But stress and anxiety, among other emotions, can manifest themselves when money becomes the main stressor. Although money may be an inevitable stressor for low-income students, taking care of yourself should be a priority above all. If you aren’t taking care of yourself, you won’t be able to accomplish as much as you’d like.

So, as a college student, what should you do if you think stress if affecting you in a negative way? Continue reading

You’re Being Too Hard On Yourself

For some reason, our generation seems to glorify studying hard. All-nighters, caffeine, and cramming for that quiz right before class. Sound familiar? Well, if it does and you find yourself dozing off to the lecture about Maxwell-Boltzmann distributions, let me tell you something: you’re being too hard on yourself. Not only are you exhausting your brain and your own physical health, but you are also doing no help to your academic performance by overworking yourself.
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Summer Service Grant | Teaching and Learning in Lagos

Last summer, Ibironke Otusile (Wesleyan ’15) received a Summer Service Grant to contribute to both the research and grassroots education sides of the water crisis in Lagos, Nigeria.

DSC05281This past summer I traveled to Lagos, Nigeria, with so many expectations, but no idea how they would be fulfilled. I knew that there is a water crisis in Lagos, Nigeria, amongst other looming issues, and I was going there to contribute to finding a lasting solution. As part of my plans, I was going to lecture about water sanitation at a local school, while also working at the Lagos State Water Corporation and the Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency.
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An Open Letter to My Mentor

Dear Mentor,

Maybe I say it too much, maybe I don’t say it at all, but let me put it out there right now: thank you.

For all that you’ve done, do, and may do in the future. You are so appreciated. You swept in to guide me, even when you didn’t need to, selflessly, patiently, and full heartedly. You knew coming into this type of relationship that they serve mainly as a one-way street, where you teach and give all that you can, and I attempt to absorb it all, and you stayed anyway.
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Helpful Advice for Graduating High School Seniors

The foreseeable end to the college application process is just around the corner! At this point in the year, some of you have probably received offers of acceptance to institutions around the country. But many of you may be waiting on some last final schools. In either case, here are some things to keep in mind:

  1. Your end of the year grades still matter

Even if you have already submitted your deposit to
the college you will be attending, keep in mind that guidance counselors still need to submit your end of the year grades. Continue reading

Dear QB: I’m on a college wait list. Now what?

DearQBIf you’ve been put on a college’s wait list, it may feel like you’re in the purgatory of college admissions decisions. Neither a clear “yes” nor a downright “no,” the wait list can be an unsettling place to be.

Although there isn’t a foolproof method to getting of a college’s wait list, we’re here to help you navigate this uncharted territory. Here are a few tips to help you demonstrate your continued interest to the college(s) at the top of your list: Continue reading