Although my academic career at Pitzer College has come to an end, my learning journey will not. Two weeks prior to graduation, the foreseeable future was ironically still abstract and difficult for me to grasp. It brought me a feeling of excitement and nostalgia, encouraging me to reflect on my last four years at Pitzer College and six years as an Earl Woods Scholar.
Within two and a half weeks, I realized the significance and impact of friendship on the other side of the globe. I have had friends back home for years, many of whom I met during my first two years at Stony Brook University in New York. However, the ones I met throughout my study abroad experience in Florence, Italy were memorable. These friends were significant because through them and my short time abroad, I came to realize something about myself and learned exactly how I was meant to live my life.
With graduation on the horizon, I cannot help but reflect on my personal growth over the last four years. College has definitely served as a formative experience in my life – one where I’ve had several opportunities to critically engage with my identity.
The summer of sophomore year can be a very difficult time in the life of the average college student. Between choosing a discipline and finding a career, there is an overwhelming amount of pressure on the student to find a project that will help them further their professional goals. For many, summer plans usually involve taking on internships, doing research or enrolling in summer courses while others decide to work or take trips around the world. During the summer of my sophomore year at the University of California, Berkeley, I had the privileges of doing a little bit of both. Through my Anthropology class, I spent several weeks exploring, working in and experiencing the breathtaking beauty that is Peru.
We called ourselves “The First Five.” That summer of 2008, Avni, Omar, Pau, Stephanie and I (thought we) were the coolest kids at the TGR Learning Lab. In our pre-planned, color-coordinated outfits, we assisted teachers and students in building mouse trap cars and launching rockets.
Interspersed with all the fun, we learned from community and business leaders how to build our résumés, network with professionals and present with confidence. I’m not entirely sure, but I think that was the last time I ended a presentation with an awkward grin and a “…So yeah.” In my current position as an Academic Counselor at UC Irvine, I enjoy mentoring students through college and toward their graduate school and career goals.
This past summer, I was granted the opportunity to work as an intern in the athletic training department for the Los Angeles Rams. This opportunity was beyond phenomenal because when I was a child the game of football and the way the players would move with such grace and body control always intrigued me. The thought of working alongside professional athletic trainers, doctors and high-caliber athletes gave me another reason to be enthusiastic about summer.
Computers have always enthralled me. As a child, I was spellbound by my family’s old Dell computer. For nearly a decade, I would go onto different websites solely to learn more about computers. It didn’t always come easily – like when I installed a virus trying to make a website – but I ultimately grew very comfortable behind a keyboard. I sought to understand the mechanics of computers, and I built my own computer the same year I took my AP Computer Science course. My passion for computers has led me to many exciting opportunities.
In our latest Scholar Voices feature, we hear from rising Lehigh University junior Tsion Taye. A Washington, D.C. native and an Earl Woods Scholar, Tsion takes us inside her first two years as a college student, highlighting some memorable life experiences. Proceeds from tournaments like next week’s Quicken Loans National help us provide the support and resources necessary for students like Tsion to achieve their dreams.
For a long time, back to my high school days, I remember wanting to become a civil engineer at my dad’s advice. I’ve had my eye on this particular goal in large part because I had a strong desire to help communities by designing and implementing safe civil infrastructure. As an Earl Woods Scholar and with the support of my family, I set my dreams in motion when I was accepted as an engineering student at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo.
Currently a senior at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts, Earl Woods Scholar Phuong Vo has created a home for herself in many different cities throughout the world. This is her story about studying abroad in Germany.
This fall, Yeon Jin Lee will begin pursuing her MFA in the Film/TV Production Program at the School of Cinematic Arts at the University of Southern California. And what’s more, Yeon Jin already has a short film out, Driving While Undocumented, which is not only based on a true story, but points a spotlight on a topic that shaped her own life and the lives of many more in the U.S.—immigration.
My name is Christine Nzokou and I am an Earl Woods Scholar for the class of 2020 studying at the University of Maryland, College Park. With my freshmen year ending and the summer coming, I was offered an internship position with the Tiger Woods Foundation (TWF), which I gladly accepted.
Earl Woods Scholar and University of California, Irvine rising sophomore, Ruben Triscareno spent the summer interning with the Tiger Woods Foundation. Based at the TGR Learning Lab in Anaheim these past few months, Ruben joined the academic support staff, assisting in all aspects of our STEM and college access summer programs. Read on to learn some high points from his summer, including what he gained from his experience helping out during our High School Summer Academy.
In today’s post, we hear from one of our newest Earl Woods Scholars, New York native Kaycie Santiago. Kaycie, who will be a freshman at Fordham University this fall, has written and produced her first documentary, “Mirror Mirrors? The Past and Present of Preston High School,” highlighting the history of her former high school. Read on to learn how her innate inquisitiveness and passion for history led her towards creating her first film.
In our latest Scholar Voices feature, we hear from Earl Woods Scholar Christopher Camacho, a rising sophomore majoring in computer engineering at Boston’s Tufts University. This summer, Christopher returns to his hometown of Santa Ana, California and brings with him his passion for computers and technology in hopes of providing much needed resources to his community and peers. Learn more about Christopher’s student-led computer science pilot program at his alma mater, Santa Ana High School, and how he hopes to introduce and engage more students in the field of STEM.
In our latest Scholar Voices piece, we hear from Earl Woods Scholar and Bates College rising sophomore David Garcia. An Orange County, California native, David shares how moving across the country to Maine and attending a private liberal arts college has exposed him to many serious issues—from poverty and drugs to racism—plaguing his new, local community. For David, bearing witness to these problems has not only reinforced his need to give back to the community, but has shown him how vital civic engagement is.
In this month’s Scholar Voices series, we hear from recent Temple University graduate and Earl Woods Scholar alum Mariah Green. Full of ambition and brimming with a deep desire to leave this world better than she found it, Mariah poignantly reflects on the undue responsibility many first-generation students feel to accept high-paying, less-fulfilling career paths […]
In this month’s Scholar Voices series, we celebrate Black History Month. Today, we hear from our brilliant and ever ambitious Earl Woods Scholar and recent North Carolina State University graduate Yani Udiani. With a bachelor’s degree in physics and upcoming plans to begin his Ph.D. program, Yani speaks candidly about blazing a trail for fellow African-American physicists.
Earl Woods Scholar and Boston College sophomore Felix Lee writes in to our college voices series this month offering a very real glimpse at the current racial tensions affecting students of color on many college campuses across the U.S. Lee chronicles his own experience partaking in “Blackout,” a peaceful protest at Boston College and explains […]
Our Scholar Voices series continues with a post from our Earl Woods Scholarship Program’s first Boston scholar and alum Vladimir Casseus. With his newly minted Master’s degree from the school psychology program at Tufts University, Casseus reflects on the role education played in his life and how his successes were bolstered by an extensive support […]