Friday, June 24, 2016

Follow the Carrie Tower

It's our third day here in the East and we are still going through some jet lag. With the few hours of sleep we got, we still managed to get up and get ready to leave Boston and head to Providence.
Goodbye Boston
We first returned our rental car, having trouble finding the right location. I looked out from the view in the parking garage and stared at Boston for the last time. It was a lot of fun staying there and I hope I'll be able to visit it again someday to see more sites. Traveling is something I'm getting more used to now that we're settling in and switching between packing up and unpacking.

One struggle I've been having so far is carrying my luggage. My backpack is crazy heavy and hurts my back, so I place it on my big luggage bag and push them together. Lifting it up is especially difficult, but I think by the time we return from our trip, we're going to be buff.
Amtrak Station
As we waited in the Amtrak station for our train, we got more Dunkin' Donuts for breakfast again. The iced coffee I ordered was pretty bitter and I found it hard to drink without cringing.

Our train soon arrived and we went in the Quiet Car where no loud talking and cellphones were allowed. The Amtrak reminded me of BART back home, but the seats are way more comfy and it's sort of like an airplane. The ride to Providence went very smoothly and quickly. I glanced out the window and saw Providence, which is so beautiful with it's wonderful architecture, stores, plants and parks.

We took two taxis to go to our hotel. The driver asked where we were going and what we were doing, so we told him that we got a scholarship to attend Brown in the summer. He was very impressed and said he wishes his daughter can do what we're doing someday. It made me feel very proud of what we have done and will do. Hopefully one day more youth will be exposed to more opportunities like this.

Providence being pretty
Biltmore Hotel looked extremely fancy when we entered. It definitely looks like an upgrade from our last hotel. We didn't check in yet though, so we left our luggage to be stored and went out to explore Providence and Brown University. Since some of us seem to be challenged with navigation, we had trouble finding the way to Brown even though there was the tall tower poking out in the sky from the campus. There were some steep hills and it was very tiring walking up them, especially in the heat.

Fancy hotel being fancy
Since we had a lot of time to kill before our info session would start, my cohort went out to look for places to eat, such as Thaney Street which has a bunch of restaurants. It took a while for us to find the right directions there, but when we did, we decided on going to Chipotle. Like many of the restaurants we've eaten at, it was my first time eating there. It has been very fun being able to try a bunch of new different foods rather than ordering the same fast foods I always get at home. Even my food horizons are being expanded through the Ivy League Connection.
After filling out stomachs with food, we walked back to Brown. We went inside the Science Library, which actually won an award for being the ugliest building in Providence. I think it's exterior could definitely use some improvement. The inside, however, is very comfy and a nice place to nap in. We rested in there for a while to cool down before our info session and tour.
The view every time we walk to Brown
The info session started later than expected, but we got a ton of useful and interesting information about Brown. Two rising seniors of Brown, Adan and David, shared a lot of academic facts about Brown and some personal experience. Some of these include Brown's unique open curriculum, NCS, study abroad and concentrations. Brown is a very flexible school that focuses on the students being the architect of their education. I really like this idea because it allows for a lot of freedom and exploration of discovering what students enjoy and would want to concentrate or major in. They even have class shopping, in which they can choose twenty classes and hop from class to class deciding if it would be a good suit for them. An admission officer also spoke to us about the application process of Brown, such as transcripts, personal statements and interviews. She emphasized that Brown doesn't reject people because they're not good enough, but rather because they would potentially not be a good match. This is a good thing to keep in mind when I apply to colleges. People get accepted into certain colleges for good reasons.
Max is rad.
After the very informative info session, we started our tour around the campus. I went with Komal to join Bailey and Lynda with our tour guide Max. He showed us things around the campus, such as the Main Green, the John D. Rockefeller Library, the Schools of Engineering and Public Health, Sayles Hall, the dorms and the dining areas. He really highlighted the beauties of the campus and the people in their Brown who are really passionate for their causes and are very helpful. This tour showed me that Brown University seems like an awesome place to get comfortable in and study at. Applying here is definitely an option in the future when I'm signing college apps.

Two hours after our nice rest in the hotel, we walked to the restaurant Luxe to get burgers. My burger came with fries and it was so good but my stomach has just been so full lately with all the food that we've been eating. It was still a lot of fun chatting with the cohort while we're anticipating our experience taking a class in Brown. As an early celebration of my birthday coming up on Sunday June 26, we got creme broulee and the waiter put a candle on it. I'm thankful that I will be spending my birthday in a great environment with supportive and loving people.

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