Stephanie Macias is a senior at Uplift Williams Preparatory and had been a part of the Road To College program since the 6th grade. Selected for the Mayor’s Interns Fellows program two years in a row, Stephanie gained valuable life experiences as well as learned time management skills.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned in school?
Freshman year was when I had my first AP class. Even though it was brutal to keep up with the work each week, I went from doing 30 minute homework per night in middle school to dedicating three hours to studying and homework. When I had a part time job my sophomore year, I had to set certain times to work on my homework and every so often I missed turning in some homework assignments but not enough to cause too much damage. Over the years it became a routine and easier to manage. Now that I look back, freshman year homework was nothing compared to the number of essays I had to write this year. My biggest lesson I learned is time management and how to prioritize school. I never gave up, and I never lost sight to where I wanted to be after high school. Although my dreams might of changed a bit through these four years, I never forgot that college is where I want to be in the end, for a better life.
What has been your greatest accomplishment in school?
Being selected for the Mayor’s Fellows Intern Program. In 2013 I worked at United Surgical Partners International and in 2014, I interned at ORIX Corporation.
How have the RTC program/counselors supported your journey to college?
Being part of Uplift since 6th grade has made me aware of my options and that even though I am a minority, I can still succeed in the college environment. From middle school to high school we are aware that our big goal is not only achieve college readiness but to get accepted and attend college. Every year RTC organizes group college visits where we can explore and ask questions about the school. At such a young age, we learn about college: the hardships, the excitements, and the challenges faced ahead. Helping out students with college applications, financial aid, and scholarships, past their work hours shows me that they are not here because of the money, but to make sure they prepare us for a successful college experience. They also create college fairs and bring admission representatives to help us find the right school for us. Since most of the senior class are first generation students, RTC has made it their mission to better prepare us on what’s to come by bringing Uplift Williams Preparatory alumni back to talk to us who then share their experiences and challenges they have faced. They more than prepare us; they inspire us. They support us throughout the college process and encourage us not to doubt ourselves on our choices. Being a minority is really intimidating because there are less of us in college, but college counselors are there supporting us in the long run because they care about our education.
What are you most excited about for college?
I am most excited about learning about new cultures. Since my responsibilities at home made it impossible for me to join after school activities, I want to be involved in all sorts of clubs. I am also excited about the new acquired independence and internships. I am excited for learning and trying new things, but most of all I am excited to participate in study abroad opportunities.