I was thirteen when I knew…

How have you taken advantage of the educational opportunities you have had to prepare for college?

I was thirteen when I knew. After the first grade report came in, my “A’s” gleaming gloriously, a testament to my perseverance and academic achievement, I decided to seek this “education thing” with all that is in me. There was no reason to go halfway, no excuse for the easy way out. In 8th grade I knew that a University was my ultimate goal, and not just any University, but one that would be as rewarding to attend as those “A’s” were to see. This objective is clear when one regards my High School Career and each challenge I pursued throughout all four years: mental, emotional, physical, and social challenges; I invested in my own development as a student and person. I was thirteen when I knew I had to take advantage of every opportunity that would place me on the right path, toward the right college. In pursuit of higher education, I immediately set my sights on my goal: attending a University. Knowing this would take preparation both academically and otherwise, I planned out the courses I would take for the rest of my years at Cathedral City High School. Freshman year I focused on balancing challenges, maintaining good school work-ethic while sharpening my mind and body with a new sport. The Swim team proved to be more of a trial than I had anticipated. With morning practices at 4am, afternoon study hall from 2:30pm to 3:40pm, and practice from 4:00pm to 6:30pm, I ran my body through an exhaustive regimen of practice, class, and homework. Swim meets that took me out of my 6th period English class were a conflict I had not anticipated, and made me all the more rely upon my ingenuity to overcome the obstacles of being a well-rounded individual. This first challenge, of mental, emotional, and physical bearings, gave me some of my most treasured memories: overcoming the vast obstacles as my own physical limitations, self-doubt, and the time consuming nature of the sport. Swim forced me to push myself further from the lackadaisical habits prevalent in high school and develop stability in any circumstance. Sophomore year I decided to add more to my schedule by taking AP European History instead of World History, and in taking on Soccer in the winter and Track in the spring. For my first AP class, Euro was a humdinger! As hard as it was to acclimate myself to the strenuous workload of my first AP Class, I learned valuable lessons about the importance of self-motivation in a collegiate course, and how to prepare for a major test, such as an AP exam. This prepared me for not only the AP courses that followed, but also for the rigorous college classroom where individual reading assignments and daily lectures will be far more common than the spoon-fed information of many High School curriculums. Soccer and Track proved social and emotional challenges, as they separated me from my immediate group of friends and thrust me in with others I barely knew. It was a good experience, deepening my understanding of people outside my usual sphere of influence and expanding my friend base from the typical “AP kid” to also include the very intelligent and talented, albeit less academically motivated, students of CCHS. As I made my way into the third year of my High School career, I took on an unprecedented adversity in entering AP Physics without having the pre-requisite course of CP Physics. Ever daring, I entered the class and struggled with the material, as it is impersonal and quite unlike any other science class I had taken. I rose to that occasion too, because while my semester grade reflected a “C” I received a “B” on my year-end final, and it was only through unfortunate circumstances that it did not raise my grade enough to reflect my gained knowledge. I do not regret this decision however, because while it lowered my GPA, it increased my tenacity in my studies. Met with a challenge unlike any other, I landed on my feet, ending the course with a proficient understanding of Physics and a greater appreciation for the dynamic world around me. This mental challenge was just one of the difficult classes I engaged in Junior year, as well as the leadership role I took on second semester in joining our school’s Associated Student Body, as the Commissioner of Student Organizations. As such, I became responsible for the publicity of such events put on by student organizations and recognition of accomplishments for individuals that participated. ASB has brought with it a wealth of knowledge and experience well worth the effort. As I sit today, I am the Executive Treasurer of ASB, and this role has been one of the most daunting and rewarding to fulfill. From the responsibilities of planning and executing various activities for my council of 2005-2006, as well as being accountable for the monetary organization of our school, I have learned a great deal about prioritizing and goal setting, as well as leadership in my everyday life. As Executive Treasurer, Colorguard Captain, and Choir Club President, I have taken on many leadership roles this year, and in taking on a job for the last six months, on top of my AP and elective studies, I placed myself in a very demanding position Senior year. This mental, emotional, social, and physical challenge is the one of greatest magnitude, as my arduous schedule puts my activities on all burners and leaves little room for error or recreation. This has already produced dramatic growth in my personal abilities, accomplishments, and durability. I do not participate in these activities for the fame of leadership or authority, for leadership is ultimately service and sacrifice, no matter what glory may come of being in authority, but I participate because I desire to prepare myself for the future in which I plan to play many roles: student, leader, athlete, career woman, person, and eventually mother and wife. Within my nature is a constant drive to pursue greater heights and succeed to greater extremes. This dogged determination within me led me to develop into the person I am today: a person who takes advantage of the opportunities to get better, who prepares well before any venture, and a student who can bring a multifaceted background of experience to her next community. I am a student well prepared for the University of California.

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