Friday, May 25, 2012

Front and Centre

"How to rule the world" -- our chaperone Igor Litvin used this phrase to emphatically set in stone exactly what we were to be doing this summer. Meanwhile, we carried the Yale Blue banner, a perfect symbol to hold while standing in the presence of the school board.

This year, the school board meeting was bordered by both prompt concern and good feelings. At the very start of the meeting, we sat and listened in as adult education students and teachers advanced to the podium urging the district not to cut funding to the program. It was, in truth, an stark contrast between the celebration of the Ivy League Connection.

The four Yalies pose for a snapshot from my mom.
But as the night progressed, jovial moods set in. Each cohort approached the podium in alphabetical order, with each chaperone giving a short speech to describe their program and what it entailed. The moment the Cornell group approached the stand, I received a sharp twinge of nostalgia. It felt incredibly weird seeing that cohort holding their banner in front of the board, with the knowledge that I stood exactly where they did just one year ago.

Once we stood in front of the board, I knew for certain that this was to be the moment that solidified our identity as the Yale cohort. We stood humble in front of the board, but as Mr. Litvin continued to speak, it became apparent what exactly we were heading for. I began to feel proud of that we had been chosen -- and I could tell that my fellow cohort did as well.

Austin Long ('15) and I met each other last week at the Yale dinner.
He extended the offer that if we ever needed anything, let him know.
After each of the cohorts were presented, Austin Long (Yale '15) who spoke last year approached the stand to speak again. His words of encouragement were great, and after having gotten to know him a little at the Yale dinner, I could see further the passion he had for his school. Next, my old friend Terilyn Chen (Harvard '16) spoke to the board. She spoke of interviews, Spongebob Squarepants, and affirmed that this program worked.  I think each of us knew that was true but did not really affirm it as well. I have a good feeling we will when we move on too.

I must thank all the donors, the school board, and all the parents who came to the meeting. Without any of their support, we would not be here, right now, awaiting something grand. We cannot let them down this summer. We will not.

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