Monday, May 13, 2013

Phi Theta Kappa - An Experience Like No Other!

By Ange Akproh

During the weekend of April 4-7, 2013, my chapter Alpha Theta Phi had the honor of participating to the international conference of Phi Theta Kappa, which was held in San Jose California.

I, in addition to five of members of our chapter had the opportunity to attend this conference to and have a personal feel of what it is to be a part of this amazing experience. Also, one of our remarkable members was selected to join us on this trip, which was supervised by our chapter advisor, Dr. Doctor.

My personal experience during this conference was more than what I expected. Unlike the Regional Conference, which I also had the opportunity to attend, the international conference hosted more than 300 chapters coming from every state the United States in addition to several chapters coming from outside countries such as Germany.  The conference was very well organized in a very striking way that created a learning environment which provided the attendees with an amazing experience that they will never forget.

During the conference, I attended several workshops that taught me many tips on how to be an accomplished leader. The workshop that most impacted me was the one about college applications and how it relates to success in life. During this workshop, the panel of several Phi Theta Kappa members who shared their personal experience while transferring from their community college into a top four-year institution. Many of them did not know what their lives would be like when they started attending college. Mostly because of financial issues they were facing in their families, they had no other choice but to attend community colleges. Even though they were all brilliant scholars, many limitations stopped them from realizing their dreams to attend Ivy League schools. They went through their community college years without hopes of ever having their story told as “overachievers”. Then came the time they had to transition into four-year schools. The thought of the application process was scary to most of them because of their financial boundaries. Motivated by other advisors and professors, they decided to still postulate for the top schools and eventually got accepted at schools such as Cornell University, Stanford University, and New York University. The secret they said, was to “tell your story”. Among all applicants, they were the ones that got accepted because they were able to convey their message to the admission officers at those schools. They impacted each reader by sharing their limitations, their aspirations, and their life as a whole. “It is not about telling the decision makers what they want to know, but what you want them to know that is special about you”. For some, this could mean sharing their family issues, their financial difficulties, or the lessons they learnt in life for others. But no matter what it is, that’s what would favor an acceptance into your dream school, grant you a scholarship, or even a job because it would be a description of who you are. 

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