Antonio M.
Earlham College
Richmond, Indiana

My Transition from Albuquerque to Earlham College

When I was a senior in high school I had no idea what the future was going to bring about. I have to admit I was nervous. I applied to 8 colleges, 7 of which I was accepted and one where I was waitlisted. This made things slightly harder as I now had to choose one college out of seven that I liked best. I rode things out, to let my feelings develop. By April I had narrowed down my choices to three options, Earlham College, Bard College, and Cornell College. I knew that I could only attend one so I visited my number one choice, Earlham. When I arrived on campus I had a plan to check if Earlham was the right place for me. I made a checklist of the three most important things, class size, quality of teaching, and comfort. After a few days of being on campus I knew Earlham was the right place for me.

Upon my arrival to campus, I didn’t know what living alone was going to be like since it was my first time. But I couldn’t turn back after making it this far. The first few weeks were fine but the honeymoon phase began to wear off. I started second guessing whether I made the right choice or not and I had considered to transfer back to New Mexico. I was feeling homesick, sad, and confused. I called home almost everyday and had conversations with Mike and Christina and my family about returning to New Mexico.

These conversations helped me realize that this was all normal and a part of the process of adjustment. I was patient and allowed myself to keep an open mind and push through these hard times. I am very glad that I did because many opportunities were opened for me, ones that I would not get at any other school, and one of which I am very excited about. I applied to the Tibetan Studies program in Northern India and was accepted. In this program we will stay in India for the entire fall semester living with Tibetan families to learn the language, history and culture. We will also have a 90-minute private session with His Holiness The XIV Dalai Lama.

As I am approaching the end of my first year of college I am glad I stayed where my heart led me. I am very happy where I am and I can’t picture being anywhere else. So here is my advice to you: if your heart leads you with its decision, there is a purpose for it. Never act upon instant emotions. Take the time to adjust and understand that hardships will come about, but they are only temporary. The transition is different for everyone so do your research and trust in your feelings. Everything always works out. It may be hard to picture yourself away from home and it may seem impossible. Just know, many have done it before you and you can do it too. I wish all Scholars well in their academic adventures. Good luck and congratulations to all of you.”