Project Prefrosh

I like Cornell. I mean, I really like Cornell. When I see campus tour groups, I want to shout at them all to come here (though I refrain, because that would probably scare them away). My friends back home have called me out for constantly talking about Cornell; my sister has heard so much about […]

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I like Cornell. I mean, I really like Cornell. When I see campus tour groups, I want to shout at them all to come here (though I refrain, because that would probably scare them away). My friends back home have called me out for constantly talking about Cornell; my sister has heard so much about it that she’s ready to apply—even though she’s only a sophomore in high school. Recently, I decided to share my enthusiasm in a more tangible way: by hosting a prospective freshman (or “prefrosh”) during Cornell Days, when admitted students visit campus.

As it turned out, my prefrosh, Amanda, had applied early decision and was therefore bound to attend Cornell. But living in Florida, she had never visited; she still wasn’t sure she had made the right choice. Going into Cornell Days, I was nervous about being matched with someone shy or otherwise incompatible with me—and, as I soon found out, she had exactly the same fears. Luckily, our personalities clicked and there wasn’t a single awkward moment. I even let her sleep in the bed while I took the floor, turning my triple into a quad.

It felt strange—but great—to teach her things that I’d been equally curious and clueless about just a year ago, when I came for my own prefrosh visit. I showed her around, took her to a dining hall, gave her tours of a few dorms, and talked about how to get involved on campus. She got along with all of my friends (a few of whom were ILR majors, just like she’ll be next fall), and by the time she left, she had no more doubts about her decision to come to Cornell.

I’ve never felt like such a college student before. Amanda told me she couldn’t believe how many people I know; even I didn’t realize how many friends I’ve made until I said “hi” to almost everyone we passed on North Campus. One of the most rewarding parts of her visit came when I was saying goodbye to her and her parents the next morning. Her father asked me, “Are you always this happy?” Well, yes, I am—give or take a few prelims.

— Alexandra Clement ’16

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