The orientation was supposed to start at 5:45, but afraid that I would be late, I left my house at 4:45. Despite getting stuck in traffic, I still arrived at Pinole Middle School very early, at 5:25. Because we got there so early, my mom and I used the bathroom and had the opportunity to talk with others before the orientation officially started.
Once the orientation did start, Ms. Kronenburg was the first one to talk. Her speech was short because she had to rush off to the Adult School Graduation, but it was very valuable and it made me look at blogging a different way. (Especially her comment on how college admissions officers read these blogs and it’s not just Don.) Nonetheless, it was still quite short and after only about a minute or so, she had to leave and Don instructed the Chaperons to stand up as it was their turn to talk.
All of the chaperones had a nice little “get to know me” speech, and I was very surprised by how much experience some of them had traveling with students. (One of the chaperones, Jennifer Hanson, took students multiple years to visit France!) However, it didn’t matter how much experience they had, as they were all highly qualified, and this began apparent when we all broke off a second later into our cohort meeting lead by our chaperons.
|The lovely chaperones.|
Kendra, of course, led ours, and I think that she did a very good job adding comedy and lightheartedness to the discussion. The discussion itself covered a very rough idea of what the schedule would be and possible places that we could visit when we were both at the University of Pennsylvania and Brown University. I felt very loved to see on the agenda for July 21st, “Wish Amelia a Happy Birthday!” However, we couldn’t spend too much time talking about minor things like that, because we had an alumnus there to tell us all of the highs, lows, and secrets for her trip at Brown.
Our alumni was named Krystal Pantoja, and she really was a gem! She talked about, and we asked her almost everything possible. We discussed the clothing that would be needed, possible outings, dining commons food, living situations, Action Plan, challenge course, class times, places to hang out, the lack of taxes on clothes, school field trips, homework, TA’s, and probably some that I’m missing. I think that talking to her not only eased my anxiety about the trip and makes me more prepared, but also eased the parent’s minds. However, we didn’t have much time with Krystal as she had things to do, and so instead, we got to talk to Don.
|Listening to Krystal|
His speak was actually relatively short (but still very informative) and covered all of the important overalls of the trip, such as arrival time and drop-off. He also went over a variety of things he had lying on the tables as possible loaner items at a different time.
In general, the orientation was very informative, I especially for my mother (who it was intended for) and I think it was a valuable use of my last Monday evening before school gets out.