So you are a first generation student in your immediate family?
It’s very important to me. I also have 2 last names which is very common in the Hispanic community... I will be applying for first generation graduation and I will carry my two last names on my diploma, for my family.
You made a decision between staying home and going away. Does it mean something more to you to go away to college?
I’ve learned so much more about life coming here as opposed to being at home. Being from NYC you grow up with tunnel vision mentality, you do this, you get through and that’s it. Whether it’s taking the bus, riding the subway, getting to school. Here it’s given me the opportunity to stop and be like, “wow”. There’s so much more. There’s an incredibly diverse population in NYC that you can’t really find here but in a different aspect, people listen. There’s more to life than riding the L into the city everyday, so that’s a lot of the value for me.
Do you remember the moment when it clicked for you that New Paltz would be a good choice?
Yes. I applied to the honors program right after I got accepted into early action. I got accepted before I attended accepted students open house. So, I applied for honors housing and got it.
What about the honors program made you want to get in in the first place? Was it just something smart kids do or was it deeper than that?
My parents pushed me a little bit to try it. I looked at their course catalog and there’s a lot of interdisciplinary, very interesting courses that I took interest in. In high school, I was part of the honors track but that meant taking classes with the STEM kids. I’m very much a theatre arts person. So, I was kind of used to have both of those perspectives in the classrooms and it was very interesting to get that on the college level where people were coming from all different majors with all different backgrounds.