My Match Day

Rosalyn Huff, 2015 National College Match Recipient and QuestBridge Blogger
Rosalyn Huff, 2015 National College Match Scholarship Recipient

Notifications still hadn’t been released when the bell rang, or when I sat on the bus on the way home, or even as I walked up to my front door. I refreshed the QB application portal one more time (sorry QB, I know that all of the refreshing crashed your homepage) as I stood on my front porch. I sighed as there was still no update, reminding myself of the promise that they would in fact be released by the end of the day as I dug into my jacket pocket for my house key. It wasn’t there. Puzzled, I performed a basic pat down on myself. It wasn’t in the other pocket, the pockets on my jeans, in my purse, or in my backpack. I scolded myself. How could I let this happen on such a day? And it was raining.

I ran to the back door. Locked. I tried to climb through the windows. Fail. I attempted to lift the garage with my own two hands. Nothing. I even tried to pick the lock. Bent debit card. Afraid that my Match decision would come in at any moment and I would feel compelled to check it while sitting on my front porch in the rain, my final solution was to text my stepdad and ask him to leave work to let me in. I knew that I was crossing the line, but it was a special circumstance, so I decided to go for it. After a long phone lecture and 30 more minutes of waiting, I was finally inside and free to check my Match decision in the comfort of my home.

Columbia MatchI nearly flew up the stairs toward my room, shrugging my backpack and jacket off as fast as humanly possible and plopping into the chair at my desk. My laptop was already open and on the QB website. My fingers were like dynamite as I logged in to the application portal. And there it was. “An update was added to your application on December 1, 2015.”

I cried as soon as I read the word “Congratulations.” I didn’t even take the time to read which school I was matched to before letting the tears roll down my face. I was in love with all three of the schools that I ranked, and knowing that I was going to one of them, no matter which one, was so fulfilling. After wiping my tears, I brought myself to read the first sentence. I skimmed it, searching for the name of the university, and when my eyes landed on “Columbia University,” I threw my hands in the air and sprinted from my seat. Columbia was #1 on my list. I was in shock. I stood in the center of my room with my hands over my mouth, trying to process that I, a black girl from a low-performing high school in Kentucky, was going to an Ivy League university with a full scholarship.

Although I learned of the match only recently, I think it’s safe to say that QuestBridge has changed my life. Without this splendid organization, I know for sure that I wouldn’t have even considered applying to an Ivy League. Also, beyond providing me with the opportunity to attend one of the most prestigious universities in the country for free, QB has provided me with the opportunity to be proud of myself. Like I said in my very first blog post, I have a hard time feeling like I’ve truly achieved anything. But now, and for the first time, achievement is real. Thank you to my school counselors and teachers, thank you to my friends and family, but most importantly, thank you QuestBridge.

by Rosalyn Huff, 2015 National College Match Scholarship Recipient