The CC team is beyond excited to introduce our first cohort of CC Student Ambassadors. These nine high school and college students will be writing articles, creating college lists, participating in the community discussions, supporting our social media, and taking on other projects to share their college experience with our community and spread the word about CC. We were blown away by the hundreds of amazing applications we received for these positions. It was hard to narrow it down, but we chose nine students who have shown dedication to making the college process a little less stressful and a little more fun for themselves and others.
Read on to learn more about our first cohort of CC Student Ambassadors! We hope to bring on more students from more schools in the future, so stay tuned for the next time we're accepting applications.
Amelia Leone is a current junior at NEST+m High School in Manhattan. She is an editor of her school's newspaper as well as the President of the non-profit tutoring organization, Learning Pals. Amelia enjoys running, dancing, and exploring NYC’s vibrant foods, thrilling activities, and hidden places.
Growing up in New York City, Amelia has been exposed to a variety of cultures and perspectives. She looks forward to sharing her own experience with the college process, as well as experiences of students with varying goals and backgrounds
As a high school student that is currently navigating the college process, I’m constantly reminding myself that everything will shake out even if it initially takes some adjusting.
Delaney is a first-year student at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts where she is majoring in Business Administration with her concentration still to be determined. She is originally from Phoenix, Arizona but spent some time as a child living overseas in both Shanghai, China and Taipei, Taiwan. Delaney is super excited to explore all the opportunities available to her at Northeastern and is eager to help other students navigate college admissions in general.
In high school, I had my sights set on leaving Arizona and going to a college in an urban environment. My application process was long, with 22 schools on my list, but I managed it all by splitting up the work and setting individual deadlines for myself. My main piece of advice to students applying to college is to have a good mix of schools to increase your options. With college admissions being so unpredictable, I wanted to ensure I had a strong balance of safety, reach, and target schools.
Gabby is a freshman attending Case Western (Go Spartans!). She will be majoring in Neuroscience with a minor in Sports Medicine. In high school, she was involved in Student Government and National Honor Society and was on the Varsity Cross Country, Soccer, and Track Team. She currently is on the CWRU Women's Track & Field Team and the Freshman Secretary of the Class Officer Collective. She is super passionate about helping others reach their goals and especially helping those who want to go down a similar path as she does. She's super excited to be a part of the College Confidential Fam!
I have two pieces of advice for anyone starting (or consumed) in the college admissions process: start early & listen to your heart, not someone else's. Applying to college is a marathon, not a sprint. It's long and difficult and starting late and rushing through everything will not only be super stressful but just not feasible at all. Starting as early as possible (the summer before senior year, or if you're an overachiever, the spring of junior year) helps out SO much. Even if you start by just reading College Confidential blog posts on different colleges you're interested in or different types of majors will help a ton. My second piece of advice may sound super cliche, but it's just so important to know. A lot of people apply to a college or pursue a career because of someone else. Their parents want them to, a friend wants to go there, a google quiz told you this was the best major to pursue. I can't tell you how many times I fell victim to listening to other people's hearts. Only YOU know where you want to go and what you want to do in the future. Other people can guide you and give their opinions (which you should totally listen to!), but ultimately, in the end, it's your decision. You know the best about yourself.
Grayson is a first-year architecture major at the University of Southern California. He is originally from Arkansas, discovering his passion for architecture, while working on community architectural renovation projects in his hometown. Grayson plans to focus his career in architecture on historic preservation, inspired by the architectural potential which exists in his hometown as well as multiple other small towns throughout the Delta region. When Grayson has his little bit of free time not spent in the studio, he enjoys collecting vinyl records and thrifting. He also really likes soup, he even wrote his Common App personal essay about why he likes soup so much.
Your application should be a deep reflection of yourself and your personality. Don’t try to fluff it up with parts of you that aren’t entirely true, because realness is what the admissions committee is looking for. Real people with real stories, who will make great additions to their college’s community.
Lisa Zhang is a senior at St. Margaret’s Episcopal School in San Juan Capistrano, California. She is a passionate writer, Etsy shop owner, and animal rights activist. Her love for horses and volleyball is infinite, and her guilty pleasure is reading mystery novels. One of her all-time favorite authors is Agatha Christie. In college, she plans to pursue business with a minor in psychology.
I am looking for a school that feels like home. This entails having an academic program that aligns with my future goals and a community that will allow me to reach my highest potential. I want to be at a school that fosters collaboration in a fairly competitive environment where I can be challenged to grow and have fun at the same time.
Meghan Hartman is a sophomore at James Madison University from New Jersey. She’s currently studying Media Art and Design, with a concentration in Creative Advertising and a minor in Honors Interdisciplinary Studies. Her main involvement at JMU is in the Alpha Delta Pi sorority, where she lives in the sorority house and is a member of the executive board. Outside of school, she loves to read and hopes to one day work in the publishing industry. She also enjoys traveling and plans on studying abroad her junior year.
My advice to any students applying to college is to not let your peers influence your process. The college you attend is a very personal choice and the best school for someone else might not be the best school for you. Go into the process with an open mind, and choose your school based off what you feel is right for you, not what other people are doing.
Riley Chong is a current student at Vanderbilt University studying Public Health, Public Policy, and Economics. He is an avid runner and coffee drinker and enjoys listening to artists such as SZA, Harry Styles, COIN, sunshine blvd, The Weeknd, and ABBA. Riley is incredibly passionate about college advising, the application process, educational equity, and social justice, and he is excited to start this new role as an Ambassador at College Confidential!
I approached the college application by first looking at colleges that were tailored to MY needs. I only selected and applied to schools that had exactly what I wanted, and schools that I knew would give me the resources specifically to jumpstart my career. That is ultimately why I chose Vanderbilt, because they had the exact major(s) I wanted, and they had extensive career advising resources specifically in my future career interests, on top of all the amazing clubs, organizations, and internship opportunities that Vanderbilt offers. This strategy also removed a lot of pressure for me. I knew that I was applying to a college that specifically addressed what I wanted, so I did not compare myself as much to other people because I knew they had different paths than me, and therefore, there was no point in comparing myself.
Ryan P. Tierney is a third-year student at Harvard College who is seeking a degree in History and Literature with a secondary in Economics. He hails from Castle Rock, Colorado, where he graduated Valedictorian from Regis Jesuit High School.
At Harvard, Tierney is a Staff Writer and former Editor for the Harvard Political Review, the Director of Community Partnerships for the John F. Kennedy Junior Forum, a researcher for the Harvard Undergraduate Foreign Policy Initiative, the President of the Harvard ROTC Association, the Co-President and Co-founder of the Harvard Hibernian Club, an athlete on the Harvard Varsity Men’s Swim and Dive Team, and a 2nd Class Midshipman in the Old Ironsides Naval ROTC Battalion, where he is seeking a commission in the United States Navy upon graduation.
In his free time, Tierney enjoys playing jazz trumpet, hiking, camping, skiing, reading, cooking, playing video games, building LEGOs, and spending time with his family and pet cats.
Ryan's advice for college-bound students:
The college process can be very stressful, and oftentimes, high school students will be blinded by competition, only seeing rankings and prestige in a college. I encourage you to resist this temptation, and search instead for a school that fits your learning style, that fits your personality, and that fits your goals for the future. If you do this and prioritize a school’s “fit,” you will have not only more success in the college search process, but also a far more fulfilling college experience.
Shreya is a freshman at the University of California, San Diego where she studies Math and Computer Science. She is passionate about social justice and using technology in unconventional ways to better the lives of others. In high school, she was heavily involved in Speech and Debate and taught speech and debate to students around the world. In addition, she conducted research at the University of Southern California on epilepsy and post-traumatic brain injury. Her main involvement in college is Women in Computing and ACM where she and her peers create fun projects with software. In her free time, she loves teaching, reading, and exploring hidden gems in San Diego.
My one piece of advice for students applying to college is to BE YOURSELF. Explaining what makes you different from your peers is vital for college applications; this should come from your life experiences and your goals/aspirations. Do some soul searching on what you hope to achieve in the future and use that as guidance on where and what you should apply for.
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