What is the name of the institution you attend and what year are you currently at the school? Additionally, please provide any information pertaining to your relevant background i.e. high school, ethnicity and gender. All of your answers to the questions below will greatly help parents with prospective students separate the reality from myth of different colleges.
Past Education: bayarea high school. Asian. Male. Harvard Class of 2014.
1. What were your expectations of your college in terms of its academic and social culture? How did your time at this institution stack up to your expectations?
I wanted to be able to meet some of the brightest students across the nation and be able to connect and interact with them. So far, it has been a lot of fun. I have been able to meet a lot of people and got to learn about their interests and their backgrounds. It is really different from high school.
2. In your personal experience, what is the drug scene (excluding alcohol) at the college like? Please give estimates of the percentage of people that use them. What are the disciplinary actions taken towards student who are caught using substances?
I don’t come in contact with many students who do drugs. I don’t try to associate myself with them. I have no idea what percent of people do drugs. Harvard takes a lot of action if you are caught. However, it is never as serious as getting caught by the real police.
3. In your personal experience, what percentage of people drink on a regular basis (at least once or twice a week) at your college? What are the disciplinary actions taken towards students who are caught drinking?
Many people drink on campus. If the drinking becomes dangerous or too excessive, people will know and actions will happen. However once or twice a week controlled drinking will not have the same effect.
4. What are some of the most significant differences between your college and high school experiences?
The students are very different. I wasn’t expecting such a wide variety of students. Also, you start over so if had a bad past, you can make sure that your good personalities are shown. All-in-all it is a better experience than college. I felt college apps makes high school too competitive.
5. What do you like most about your college? And conversely what do you enjoy the least about it?
I really like the communities that are formed. Lots of people get to talk and communicate with one another. The level of competition between each of the students is nowhere as high as was high school.
The only thing I don’t like is that Harvard has a hype that makes a lot of people think that they are better than others. Although people don’t show it very much, their personality has that kind of feel. Some people don’t work very hard as they have already worked so hard to get to Harvard.
6. What are some of the most important things you feel students should know or do going into college? What about going to your college?
If you know how someone else got to a college. There is absolutely no reason to follow it. What I did will not work for others. You can ask for tips, but please don’t ask for play-by-plays. It will be so extremely hard for you to repeat what I have done exactly and I am sure Harvard doesn’t want a clone. Be original and do what you think is important.
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