Facing the Future

A blog post by Project GRAD Scholar, Will Samayoa

In some ways, my days follow the same pattern I’ve been doing throughout high school. I wake up very early, finish homework, and help get my two younger sisters ready for school. But the weeks are flying by like a blur and I am reminded daily of how life is about to change radically. 

In what feels like only a few minutes ago, I was organizing FAFSA workshops for 250 of my fellow seniors, studying for my AP exams, co-chairing meetings planning the Prom, and looking forward to my 18th birthday. And having to make the biggest decision of all – what college to go to.

So, the Prom is behind me (had a blast!), high school is ending in two weeks, and I am FINALLY 18.

It is official. I am going to Hobbart and Williams Smith Colleges! It was a rollercoaster ride but I made my decision and I am very happy with it. Over Spring Break, I made the trip back for my first actual visit. After a 12-hour trip, I made it to Rochester and an HWS staff member picked me up. Not only was it cold, but it was snowing! The first time I saw snow! After an in-depth tour of the campus, the real magic began. I was taken to Durfee Hall where I would be staying for the week with a current Posse Scholar.

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Alongside Jason, I got to meet the other two Posse Scholars and I was welcomed with open arms not only by them, but by the whole campus. Whether it was random students approaching me to congratulate me on being admitted, staff introducing themselves, I felt so welcomed by the entire school community. Of course, I’m nervous but I feel ready. This is when I think back to a year ago, before my Project GRAD Westmont Summer Institute. These kinds of unfamiliar experiences were so scary to me. That was only one year ago. Now, I am charging into new experiences, hungry to explore uncharted territory outside of the Valley.

It’s an exciting time but also honestly emotional. Senior Awards, Project GRAD’s scholarship event, and graduation. Saying good-bye to teachers, my Project GRAD Advisors (Eli, Ric, Ernie), to my friends going off to colleges here in California. Things marking the end of a chapter.

But then this morning, instead of working on homework as usual, I completed an application for a Warner Brothers Studio summer internship. It hit me that this is the first “adult” job I’ve ever applied for. This internship is about my future. Fingers crossed I get it.

I will let you know when I write again this summer. I am not saying good-bye to Project GRAD though. I’ll be a Project GRAD College Scholar soon and plan on keeping up this blog so stay tuned for dispatches from Geneva, NY in the fall.

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