李春燕 08/14 5808
【高中生和家长们访谈大学生】8月14日晚亲子群邀请到Rebecca Lin，李文斯顿高中2016届第二名毕业，在Johns Hopkins大学医学预科，一年来学习生活很丰富，下一学年将在牛津学习。访谈由同校高中生Justin Wang主持。Rebecca 两天前刚从十周的暑期科学研究项目回到家，就同意来访谈，Justin 也从申请大学的紧张生活中抽出时间，我们十分感谢两家父母的支持。
My name is Rebecca Lin. I graduated from Livingston High School in 2016, and I just finished my freshman year at Johns Hopkins University. I am
pre-med, double majoring in "Cognitive Science" and
"Medicine, Science, and the Humanities" and minoring in "Spanish
for the Professions." On campus, I have conducted research, worked as a
marketing intern, participated in a few medical translation clubs, and joined a sorority. Next year, I will be studying abroad at St. Anne's College in Oxford
Question 1. Please share your "survivor" tips during the senior year in livingston High School? What help you the most to keep calm, focused during this period?
During the fall semester of senior year, you have to balance schoolwork with college applications which may become stressful, so it is important not to get overwhelmed. The best way to stay focused is to manage your time effectively and prioritize the tasks that need to get done. For motivation, you can remind yourself that if you get through this, the spring semester will definitely get a lot easier!
Question 2. And how much time did and were you able to you put towards college applications during the school year ?
As I said before, time management is very important, and you do need to put a good amount of time into college applications to be successful because you’re not done after you finish writing them—you should edit your work and bounce the ideas off of other people. You don’t want to be the person who has to write an essay the night before it’s due because it’s very stressful and will likely not be your best work. I think I started working on my Common App essay in late September, and I continuously made edits with the help of my English teacher and my friends.
Justin comment: great tips! definitely need to stop doing my late night candle burning..And i also heard essay editing takes a lot of time and patient.
Question 3. How did you and your parents made the final decision as where to spend the 4 years of college? What are some of the deciding factors if you don't mind me asking.
I think the most important deciding factor for college is the “fit,” which included a lot of different aspects for me, such as academics, size, and location, but also intangible factors like your own feelings after visiting the school. I went on a lot of college visits, which really helped me get a sense of how much I liked each school and whether it was a good fit for me. However, you should know that most people are happy no matter where they end up and learn to love their school, so you don’t need to stress that much about it.
Justin comment: Yes, by visiting couple of schools in Boston last week, I found out each school has their unique "personality" and I do hope I will be able to find the right "one" for myself.
Question 4. As the seniors all started to approach the most difficult task - college essay, please share your advice. Many schools require separate essay, eg: why you want to apply to their School? Anything the seniors should try to avoid writing in the personal essay?
I definitely think the Common App personal statement is the
most important essay and the one you should start working on first. Honestly,
you could write about anything that is important to you because it is just
about giving colleges a glimpse of your personality that they wouldn’t know
from the other parts of the application. However, examples of topics you should try to avoid are sensitive topics like politics and religion as well as clichés (like a “life-changing volunteer experience,” for example). For the individual college essays, you should make sure to tailor them to each school and avoid just replacing one college name with a different one—mention specific classes or professors that seem interesting to you or organizations you’d like to join.
Justin comment: Awesome advice as Common App is already out. Many of my friends and myself already start to pick the topic for the common essay as we try to reflect our 3 years of high school experience. very long process...
Question 5. Can you share some of your highlights during first year at John Hopkins? What are some of the activities you joined on campus?
One difference between high school and college is that you will have a lot more free time that you can fill with extracurricular activities. At Johns Hopkins, some examples of what I chose to do with my free time are that I conducted research, participated in a few medical translation clubs, worked as a marketing intern, and joined a sorority.
Question 6. It's awesome that you will get a chance to study at Oxford University next year. I am sure you are excited and looking forward to it. How did you find out the various opportunities such as this at John Hopkins?
I am so excited to study abroad at Oxford! I actually knew about the opportunity before I went to Johns Hopkins because it is one of the few opportunities for pre-med students to study abroad, so in fact, it played a part in my decision to go to Hopkins. However, even if I didn’t know about it beforehand, during orientation week for incoming freshmen, the advisors planned a variety of workshops that addressed topics like study abroad and provided a lot of resources to inform students about these opportunities. They also would send out periodic emails that would remind us about deadlines for applications, so that was helpful as well.
Question 7. How much did you connect/orient your ECs and activities to your chosen (pre-med) track after high school?
The most important thing to remember about extracurriculars is to do what you enjoy and are passionate about. So it’s not as much about aligning ECs with your future career on purpose, as it is about the idea that the activities you choose will naturally fall in line with what you want to do for the rest of your life.
For me, I really enjoy science and languages, so I am part of a couple of medical translation clubs, but I am also involved with organizations that have nothing to do with medicine, such as a sorority and a dance group.
Question 8. How do you make the decision on your major? What is your main motivation to choose med?
I decided to be pre-med because I really enjoyed and excelled in science classes in high school, and I want to help other people and solve problems. However, I am not the type of person who just "always knew" I wanted to be a doctor since I was little. Also, everyone is different and I think it is important to explore career options before you become set on one idea.
Question 9. Could you share with us what you did in the summer?
I was a research fellow at the UT Health School of Biomedical Informatics in Houston for 10 weeks. I actually just got back two days ago!
Question 10. Is it very competitive to get the study abroad and the research fellow position?
Yes, there are 8 people from JHU participating in the pre-med study abroad (which is the most they have ever accepted) and the summer position was also competitive because most of the other fellows were rising juniors/seniors in college.
Question 11. Going back to the high school, what are the activities that u were involved in?
In high school, I was involved in Key Club (community service), tutoring, and fencing. I also participated in the Columbia Science Honors Program on the weekends.
Question 12. Were you able to continue some of these activities such as community service, fencing at college?
I generally decided not to continue these activities in college and pursue different ones. I am still involved in some community service/tutoring because I started volunteering as a Reading Partner (giving reading lessons to elementary school students), but I didn't want to do the exact same things I did in high school.
Question 13. Could you share w us some of your family dynamics such as relationship w parents and your brother?
I get along well with my parents and my brother. I love them a lot and it has definitely been a change this year with keeping up a long-distance relationship, but I still try to communicate often with them.
Question 14. Does your brother look up to you?
Haha, I just asked him and he said yes.
Question 15. You know the inevitable question: what is your experience growing up as a Chinese American?
I think it's very important to learn about your culture, and I grew up going to Chinese school and participating in Chinese dance, so Chinese culture has been a big part of my life. Being Chinese and American both play a large role in my identity. Also, I think the Chinese community here is great!
Question 16. Could you describe the campus atmosphere and your friend circle?
I think that everyone at Hopkins is hardworking and striving for excellence and there's always something happening on campus. My friend circle is a lot of people I met during orientation week, but also people I met through extracurriculars and people in my sorority.
Question 17. Could you tell us a little bit about your sorority?
Sure, I am in Kappa Alpha Theta and I joined mostly to find new friends in a different circle of people. Everyone I've met through the sorority has been so supportive and I think it was one of the best decisions I made. I know a lot of people associate Greek life with hazing, but I personally did not experience any of that and it was all positive for me.
Question 18. What do you gals do together at your sorority?
We have weekly chapter meetings where we discuss upcoming events, such as philanthropy (the big event that we host is a lip sync competition that raises money for Court Appointed Special Advocates). We also have three dances every semester and spend a lot of time with our "family." The "family" is the biggest support system within a sorority, and for example, I have a "big" who is in the year above me who is a close mentor and friend. I joined in February at the start of the spring semester (JHU is different from most schools because recruitment happens in the spring, not the fall).
Question 19. How many schools did you apply and did you consult with your parents?
I applied to 12 schools total and I did consult with my parents to create the list. The college visits definitely did help me narrow it down!
Question 20. Did you visit JHU before you applied or after you got accepted?
I visited JHU before I applied (as well as most of the other schools I applied to). I didn't actually visit after I got accepted because I had already decided on going there.
Question 21. 能否讲讲他们去北京夏令营的经历？
Question 22. 女儿成长过程你们有何经验谈？
Rebecca is a self motivated kid! We gave her freedom to try whatever she wants. But we do give her our opinion about a lot of things. We watched ABC News together a lot and we talked about it. It helped her understand the world out of high school and college. I would say: trust your kid and be open minded and listen to their voice.