Summer pre-college program provides valuable experience


Summer vacation—a time for taking trips, relaxing and forgetting about the piles of summer work. But that’s not true for everyone. Some students are still hard at work, even when school is out.

Isabel Cui (12) is one of these students. Cui is extremely involved at White Station, participating in swim team, Green Team, National Honors Society and the Science National Honors Society. Over the summer, she went to a pre-college summer program offered by Brown University—The Brown Environmental Leadership Lab. The program gives high school students the opportunity to experience college life and higher learning.

Experiencing a new learning style in a hands-on environment, she learned about marine life, ecosystems in Florida and environmental sustainability. She also honed in on her leadership skills through group activities.

Cui believes that her experience at the lab was worthwhile.

“I got to meet people from all over the country and all around the world,” Cui said. “Students come from all over the world to join the program.”

After this experience, Cui recommends looking into programs that colleges offer.

“I think it’s really important that students explore different learning options outside of what they have during the school year and outside of what they have in their own high school,” Cui said.

She also emphasizes the importance of meeting new people and forming relationships with students who share the same interests.

“There was something really encouraging about being put in an environment where everyone shares similar values and interests as you.”

Cui hopes that her experience will inspire others to step out of their comfort zone and try new things in the future.