The Great Acceptance

Dianna Jimenez, Staff Writer

After having waited so patiently and anxiously for the email that would determine his college future, Pablo Santos, 12, finally received Stanford University’s email of acceptance.


Q1: How did your interest in applying to Stanford commence?


A1: It really began around the beginning of junior year. Before junior year I didn’t really think about what would happen after high school and I had this really provincial view of the world. Then I realized that I have all these options open to me and that I could visit so many places and have new experiences. One place that really highlighted that was Standford because though it is far away from home; it isn’t on the East coast, where I’d feel like I’d be on a completely other world. The kids at Stanford are really known to be “laid back,” but at the same time hard working. It reminds me of the metaphor “ducks swimming in the water”; on the outside they look calm, but underneath the surface they’re paddling and trying to stay afloat. It’s a “work hard play hard” type of mentality that I really like.


Q2: What was going through your mind before you received your email of acceptance?


A2: It’s kind of funny because in AP LIT we study a lot of metaphors, and the day I was going to receive the email, it was raining and I thought to myself ‘Ok this could either be the world crying before I am or this could be the waters that’ll give birth to something new,’ and it ended up being the second part. I just kept telling myself that if its rejection it’s okay because there are other options and if I do get accepted there would be this weight lifted off my shoulders.


Q3: When and where were you when you checked your email to find the letter from Stanford?


A3: Three days before I received the email, Stanford had announced that it would be sending all emails on Friday [December 18] at 4:00 p.m , so that Friday I had just gotten out of Quiz Bowl and Mr. Glasser arrived because he wanted to be there when I got the email. It was 3:30 p.m. and a bunch of friends and I went to Mr. Glasser’s room and we were just waiting for it to hit 4:00 p.m. We were all crowded around Mr. Glasser’s computer. It was one click away. When I first opened the letter, I thought that if it was an acceptance letter it would start with something like “congratulations,” but it didn’t so then I thought it was a rejection letter. I kept on reading and it said “it is a pleasure to offer you a spot in the Stanford class of 2020.” I went from feeling low to this really big high; it’s a feeling that I’ll never forget.


Q4: How did your friends and family react to the news?


A4: I remember right after I got the email, I called my house and my mom answered; she was talking to my older brother, who lives in Washington, on her cell phone. When I told my mom, she screamed and then I heard my brother on the speakerphone, also screaming. It was really humbling because I could tell that people were just as excited as I was. I remember coming back to school on that Monday, just walking in the halls and all seeing all my friends and having their support. It was very interesting to see how everything led up to that moment.


Q5:What are your plans now? Have you decided to go to Stanford or will you be waiting to see what you hear from other colleges?


A5: I was planning on applying to other private colleges, but since my acceptance I have not applied to any other privates. I did apply to a few UCs, so I’m going to wait for them, especially UCLA. Over the break I did a lot more research on Stanford and I just got really excited about it; I’m like 99% Stanford and honestly I probably will commit. The only thing that’s holding me back is if I really will be willing to go all the way to the bay area and be out there alone, so that’s why UCLA also seems like a nice option. Stanford is very liberal in the sense that you have a lot of options and freedom in your schedule, especially as a freshman. My original plan was to do chemical engineering but I’m going to take advantage of being able to explore and see what peaks my interest.