My Experience at the National College Admissions Conference at Princeton

cps_conferenceAs I made my way to the Princeton campus, I could feel the anticipation rising. A growing group of students and their guests marched towards the Frick Chemistry Lab not entirely sure of what they should expect. But as I walked through the glass doors, my nerves melted away, and I was greeted by a friendly table of QuestBridge employees directing me, and the other conference-goers, to our groups.

Once I settled into my groups, I was metwith a long, yet incredibly rewarding day. When my group first convened, we were all handed a small trivia sheet, which we all worked to solve together. Our groups allowed us to socialize in a smaller setting, and get to know more about other College Prep Scholars. Numerous presentations supplied us with information concerning financial aid, the College Match, and college applications in general. And, as my group members and I toured the campus with our parents, mentors, and friends, talked to admissions counselors, and learned more about our Group Leaders, who were current QuestBridge college students, we all gained a powerful insight into college life, and the college process.

As a Fein Fellow, one of the highlights of my day was getting to meet the other fellows during our lunch break. Sitting at the tables together truly reminded us that no matter how far apart we may reside, QuestBridge had connected us all.

Though the National College Admissions Conference was mostly a very informative event, it opened my eyes to the importance of finding a college that truly fits your needs, rather than finding a college that is highly ranked, because happiness does not lie in a number on a website. And that is the most important lesson of all.

— by Veronica Brusilovski, 2014 College Prep Scholar

My Experience at the National College Admissions Conference at Stanford

stanford_student_bloggerI looked around, the cool San Francisco air chilling my Arizonian legs. My first time traveling alone, I had no idea what to do, when, and where, as I stepped off the plane. Thankfully, I had arranged to meet another lone College┬áPrep Scholar before taking the train to Stanford. Erica and I–with lots of asking security guards, information desks, and random people wearing Stanford sweatshirts–finally arrived at the correct platform. But our luck didn’t stop there. From the plane to the train to the taxi to Stanford, we coincidentally met not just each other, but two other Scholars: Katebah and Alley.

Yes, the QuestBridge Conference’s binder of information was and will be undoubtedly helpful in my college application process. The real gem of the conference, however, was the people I met. My new friends inspired me to explore unfamiliar subjects and colleges. And of course, I can’t forget the enthusiastic college admissions officers. Asked about anything, from curriculum structures and financial aid to choosing the perfect roommate and food clubs, they answered all of our burning, personal questions. With a new insider perspective of the partner colleges from our Group Leaders/actual Quest Scholars, the college application process is no longer an intimidating beast taunting me, reluctant to be tamed. They also taught me that the QuestBridge network doesn’t stop once I finish applying, but extends through college and beyond to the Quest Scholars Network.

It will be a rough couple months (don’t even get me started on the plethora of editing and revising and rereading that awaits), but I know I’m prepared for senior year, thanks to QuestBridge.

— by Julie Cho, 2014 College Prep Scholar