Two weeks ago, Yahya had an opportunity to attend a Hispanic College Institute. Yahya absolutely loved this program which was held at a nearby college campus where he had an opportunity to spend several nights in the dorms. He was the youngest student in attendance (the others were all sophomores and juniors in high school) and was admitted by our friend, the first lady of the college. She is the mother of one of Yahya’s schoolmates and she and her husband, the president, have seemed to have taken Yahya under their wing with this opportunity especially. Not only did he learn so much about college admissions through workshops, but he also bonded with his “La Familia.” It was a Hispanic based event, but others were able to attend as well. There was students there were not only Mexicans, Central Americans, and South Americans but also South East Asians and African Americans in attendance as well.
The last day of the event was a parent orientation as well as a closing ceremony. I was grateful to be able to attend as my husband stayed with the other children. During the orientation, the parents were given an idea of the jist of the program as well as overview of the university which hosted the Hispanic College Institute. This was the first time I had visited the university despite it being only about 40 min. away from us. It is a historically black university actually, but they are interested in diversity and encourage other ethnicities to apply. I felt very comfortable there and I truly enjoyed being on that campus. It was so much different from where I went to school. I truly think the size of the school makes a huge difference. My alma mater is one of the largest schools in Virginia(almost 30,000 students) and I never met the president! Contrary, this school is much smaller(~4,700 students) and seemed much more personable as everyone seemed to know the president.
The closing ceremony was very long though as they recognized each familia and each of the leaders spoke. I guess I didn’t realize how much of a big deal this program was until the Mexican consulate to the U.S. spoke at the end.
Overall, this program seemed to be the highlight of Yahya’s summer. He seemed to have picked up some positive behaviors from it too which is also a plus. For the last two nights, he has offered to do the dishes because he said that they encouraged them to help their families! He loved the experience so much that he can’t wait to go back next year, insha Allah.
It also seems to be the theme of this week for me with this fast.