Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Shenandoah University

In case you didn't know already, I have been applying to pharmacy school for the Class of 2015 since this past summer. No, I am not nearly finished, seeing as how I haven't even looked at the applications for the past three months. Please don't make me feel bad. I sense some apathy from my side.

After I was invited to interview for Shenandoah University, a private school in Winchester, VA, I decided to immediately sign up for its Open House. What I discovered from applying to undergrad is that I really need to absorb the atmosphere to decide whether I can envision myself living there. So the next weekend, I jumped in my car before the break of dawn to get to SU.

Along the way, the roads were littered with dead animals. I had a Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz moment and realized that it was definitely going to be a departure from the urban-like lifestyle of home. Not only that, but I drove by farmland complete with cows and horses and the nostril-flaring smell of fresh manure. Deeelish.

I had gone to an Open House at UMB in the spring, so I thought I knew what to expect. Well, surprise surprise. Nothing was what I expected. The UMB Open House was crawling with people. When I arrived at SU, I was the first one there. Although people slowly trickled in, we amassed a group of around 20. Not only that, but we were each individually greeted by a member of the faculty. The presentations themselves were very casual and had a sort of organic flow to everything; juxtapose that with the strict and orderly way UMB held their Open House.

During the Open House, there was a student panel that came to answer our questions. I couldn't help but notice the lack of racial diversity of the panel - they were all white! I began to have doubts about whether to consider SU as an option for school or not.

Fast forward to a few weeks later.

I arrive around 20 minutes early for my interview on campus, and so I get shown around on an impromptu tour around the pharmacy building. My heart is pumping, my hands are sweating, and I keep talking to try and forget my nerves. Finally, I get shown to the interview room, where I meet my two interviewers. I guess I got a few laughs in here and there and I start to feel like I'm doing really well. After the interview, I had the opportunity to sit in on a class and actually speak to some P2 students and saw that there is racial diversity. Not only that, but everything the students were saying were so positive, and so I get really excited for the chance to possibly attend this school.

I call V in Florida afterward and the first thing she asks me is, "So when will you hear back from them?" ...uh... I feel my hands sweating again and my blood pumping through my body. Did I really not do as well as I had thought? And then I go through everything in my head, trying to pick up if they were dissatisfied with any of my answers.

Silly me. I was so excited I even received an interview, I told everyone and their moms I had one. So everyone was excited to hear how I think I did. Of course I was now nervous, thinking I had really blown it, so I was saying the obligatory, "Oh, I think I did well, but we'll see." Next day after work, I come home, check my gmail, and I see an email from SU. I panicked a little, thinking I must've screwed up submitting parts of my application or something. I clicked on the link to open it and I was shocked to read: Congratulations! It took them 24 hours to notify me of my acceptance into pharmacy school!!!!!

One more thing crossed off my bucket list!

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