Friday, May 17, 2013

The AP Tests, The Yale, And The School Board

Wednesday, May 15, 2013 was everything but normal. It was euphoric, it was depressing, it was ire, it was annoying, and most importantly, it was important. Words cannot explain how hectic and bipolar my day seem, but I have plenty of words, so I will attempt to explain just how insane the day was.

My day began as an abnormal Wednesday. It was near freezing, though it was spring. I woke up at 7:20 AM, though on Wednesdays I wake up at 8:15 AM. I'm normally an all around energetic person, no matter what part of the day, though I felt like I was half way to death. The reason for my different mood was because this day; this hectic day, I was to take the AP U.S. History exam. History has never been my strong subject, but nevertheless I got up, got ready, and got to school. Since by law I am not allowed to speak of the material on the exam I will say this -- this test was absolutely horrible. It wasn't just the test itself, but also the atmosphere, the length of the test, and the people supervising the test. Many of my fellow students and I went in to take the test knowing very little, and I believe many of us came out knowing that we knew less of what we originally thought we knew. The test was a grueling four hours, there was nothing but thinking, analyzing, and remembering. The people who were conducting the test continuously ran in and out of the classrooms, had conversations on their walkie talkies and phones, and constantly switched shifts, leaving the new conductors confused and the test takers annoyed and frustrated. After the test, some strange force shoved me to French class, though I really should have gone home because my brain refused to function properly after the difficult test. After French I decided to leave school and find some food. Siri ended up taking me to a nearby Thai restaurant, where I met my mother and had a little lunch date. After my delicious meal of Pad Thai and Thai iced tea, I went to my car. The second I ignited my engine I received a phone call. I whipped out my phone wondering who it could be.

"Hello Damian? This is Don Gosney. I thought you would like to know that Yale just contacted me and has accepted all four of you!"
"OH MY GOD! Are you serious?!"
"Yes, thought you'd like to know. Though I don't think they were pleased with the e-mail I sent them."
"Thank you SO much Don! Bye!"

This is where the euphoria kicks in. I was elated. I was awestruck. I couldn't believe it. After months of being put on the waiting list for the Young Yale Global Scholars Programs, I was finally accepted. I stepped out of my car looking for my mom. I just had to tell her. She was halfway out of the parking lot and I proceeded to flail my arms like a stranded man on an island who has just seen a ship. She drove up to me and I told her that Yale has just accepted me. She was happy and shocked and would meet me back at home. I went home and I was more jolly than Saint Nick. I was finally accepted into the program. The next few moments were all a blur, but after all the testing and screaming I did, I was exhausted. I decided to take a nap until 5:00 PM.
As you can see our flag is facing the correct way and Liam is about to give his speech.
When I woke, I immediately started getting ready for the School Board meeting. After the same old routine of choosing a blazer, a tie, a shirt etc. I was ready to head out with my dad. I had already told him via cellphone that my fellow cohorts and I will be going to study Grand Strategy at Yale this summer. With the help of my trusty iPhone GPS, we made it to Lavonya Dejean Middle School. I walked in and talked to my cohorts, my chaperone, and my classmates. Then we were instructed to sit down. Everyone sat with their cohorts and we listened to some worries and concerns of a people in the area. Then it was time for the Ivy League Connection to have the spotlight. All the chaperones and groups went up one at a time. After the chaperone gave their speech, a member of the cohort spoke to the board expressing their gratitude for the Ivy League Connection and what they hope to achieve, accomplish, and bring back. The Yale group was the last to go.  We lined right next to the podium and after a little fumbling around we held up the Yale flag. First we held it upside-down, then we flipped it up only to realize that the flag was now backwards, and finally after flipping it around, we had our flag ready. Ms. Tracey Singh-Poole gave her speech and handed the podium to our chosen speaker, Liam Guevara. Liam did a fine job with his speech. I distinctly remember speaking about how he'd like to teach illiterate children in his community how to read. After his speech, Ms. Tracey had us go up to the podium and introduce ourselves. After the Yale group, the sponsors were told to stand up and were given a round of applause. Two of them went up to speak and again were thanked by the board and the audience. Ms. Kronenberg spoke of all the hours and hard work put into the wonderful Ivy League Connection and Mr. Ramsey spoke about giving back. Finally, it was time to take the group photo. Don positioned the students, chaperones, and parents and took 21 photos so that he wouldn't have to dilly dally in photoshop for too long. After the board meeting, I couldn't even go home! I had to go to practice. By the end of the day I was beyond exhausted, but to me it will all be worth it. To be able to study at Yale. To visit Wesleyan, Brown, and Harvard. I don't think I'd miss this opportunity for the world. 

The Ivy League Connection is one of a kind and very kind. Thank you to the sponsors, the chaperones, and to everyone who is connected to the Ivy League Connection. Words aren't enough to explain my gratitude.
The entire Ivy League Connection and its chaperones and parents.

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