First Quarter at Cal Poly

When I applied to the California State University, California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo, I also applied to the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) of the school. I was lucky enough to get in the program for it has already provided many resources that have been very helpful in my college career.

During the summer, I attended the summer program by the EOP called the Summer Institute. There were approximately sixty students, and about seven staff members that run the program. During the three week program, I lived on campus on the Cerro Vista Apartments and took Psychology and English Preparation Class. Although it was only three weeks, the Psychology was very fast paced and provided the students with four units just like in the fall quarter. We were also graded on the course. On the contrary, the English course was just a preview of how a college English would be like. Instead of the letter grade, we received pass or no pass.
The main objective of the program was to provide the first generation college students a preview of the college intensity and also build the student’s confidence in them. My Psychology instructor Don Ryujin was particularly helpful in that department. He first set the stage in which all of the students were comfortable enough to interact with each other and the instructor. He made us believe that anyone who really wants to finish college can do it, no matter the color, or their income level. He identified with us that some days were going to be difficult without any doubt but on the long run, it is always better fight through that phase.

The summer program really boosted my confidence and I am looking forward to working very hard in college. I know that even though taking Psychology over just three weeks was quite intense, the college courses will challenge my mental toughness even more, even more so without the structural supported provided by the summer program. I am also looking forward to learn as much as I can, enjoy it and apply it on practical life. I truly want to enjoy the Cal Poly SLO philosophy, “Learn by Doing”.

– Utsav, Cal Poly ’15