I’ve been away for such a long time. Can you believe it’s been a year? I feel so bad for leaving everyone hangin’ but we have a year’s worth of talking to get through! Around the time of my last post I was interning with Accenture and my position there was marketing consulting. Being a consultant was very different then what was expected but leaving in August was very bittersweet for me. Next came my final year of high school!
Being in the 12th grade means that you have a lot of responsibilities surrounding college and staying on track. For me I struggled with certain things more than others. Although my grades were good and I maintained my 3.0 GPA all year, choosing what I wanted to do for college, realizing how expensive college is and the type of sacrifices I’d have to make really stressed me out. My high school helped everyone with applying for FAFSA so that took some of the stress from under my wings but applying to schools really bothered me. I’m the type of person that knows what I want and sets goals to get there. Going into the process around October – November I wanted to be a fashion designer which limited the amount of schools I could apply for in the city. The only options that I had was between Philadelphia University and Moore College of Art and Design. I’ve visited both campuses numerous times, did open houses and spoke to professors there. Out of both schools I was accepted into one which was Moore and I was excited! The excitement for me died when I received my financial aid package that wouldn’t cover everything. In my financial aid package was the Pell Grant, PHEAA Grant, A $14,000 scholarship, loans and then a gap. My Gap was $15,000 to commute on a daily basis and $25,000 to live on campus. When I realized how hard it would be to obtain $15,000 my heart shattered into pieces.
When growing up parents and families say “get good grades”, “keep those grades up in high school it’ll help with scholarships” etc etc when in reality you need so much more than just good grades. You need money, even if that money goes to transportation, books, clothing or LOANS!! Colleges are so cheap when it comes to giving out scholarships (or at least I feel this way). No matter if it was a public or private institute I did not see a lot of good financial aid packages. Mentally I was not prepared for my dream to flash before my eyes but I had to find another alternative because being in that amount of debt for four years is not about to be my life. People make it seem like getting good grades will help the black community get one step ahead. Although those good grades will help no one sat down with me and said “besides having good grades you know you’ll need money right?”. Applying for colleges has opened my eyes to the reality of what being a minority is really like and I hope that this will start a conversation amongst others. Depending on the institute and major financial aid packages will differ but regardless of where you decide to go everyone does not live with a picket fence meaning that everyone is not financially stable or able to take out loans. Financial literacy should be a class that every high school supports because those classes are really important and could help someone prepare for college. I’ve decided to major in Business Management instead with hopes of having my own business and i’ll be going to community which is basically free since my grants cover everything. Last I will transfer to a four year university to get my degree! By choosing the option to transfer I will need two years worth of loans instead of four which cuts debt down for me once I graduate. I am veeeeeery curious to see how college life will be but I will keep everyone updated.
One piece of advice that I have for anyone entering the college process is to have an open mind and figure out what success means to you. Everyone will choose a different path when it comes to college and whatever works for one person may not work for another. Understand what makes you happy and different career paths that’ll make you happy so if one plan doesn’t work out you’ll have another to fall back on.
Thank you for listening to me tonight and I will continue this talk later! This blog post will be waaaaaay to long. Next time I’ll get into hair talk and piercings because those blogs are way overdue. Don’t forget to follow this blog in the right hand corner! Lets be friends 😀