By Carolina Luna Casas, Fellow Class of 2015
During my time at Loyola, I have found myself consumed by the college bubble. This “bubble” can be described as a state of mind that revolves solely on college classes, work-study, extra curricular activities and other commitments presented to college students. This bubble is understandable since students are always busy with tests and essays and many other deadline driven tasks. I found myself so busy that I would forget to pause to remember the long-term goals I have for myself - those goals that do not necessarily have deadlines, like my papers, but require a gradual effort.
I am fortunate to have LAW SCHOOL...Sí Se Puede mentors because they have been in my shoes before. Therefore, their perspective now is one of an experienced insider, thus they can guide me as I navigate this foggy college bubble. My mentors guide me when they remind me to pause and consider the fact that it is unlikely that the present semester is going to be the nucleus of my future. Of course, they congratulate me for my hard work but they also challenge me to not let the college bubble obstruct me from my long-term goals.
One way in which my mentors challenged me to work towards my long-term goals was when my mentor Micah encouraged me to prepare for my study abroad plan. Even before I stepped foot on a college campus, I knew that I wanted to study abroad. I really enjoy learning about other cultures and engaging in different traditions, therefore study abroad seemed the perfect fit for me. I remember telling my mentor, Micah, that I wanted to study abroad my second semester of my junior year. For me, it felt as though this time was ages away, so I thought I could delay researching the available opportunities until another day.
However, Micah had another perspective. He encouraged me to immediately start looking into study abroad programs and scholarships. He must have read my mind because he also said something along the lines of “it might seem really early, but I wish that I had learned about study abroad opportunities sooner rather than later.” I took his advice and put a pause from my crazy midterms week to meet with a study abroad counselor. This meeting was incredibly informative! One of the most important aspects that I learned was that the deadlines for the different international scholarships were much earlier than I expected. If I had not had someone to remind me to take gradual steps toward my goal of studying abroad I would not have known this vital information. I am glad I have my LSSSP mentors to bring me back to reality and remind me of the importance of stepping away from the college bubble.