From Orange To Blue

July 10, 2008
Toni Lynn Iyoha

Brittany Armellino, a 17-year-old born on December 26, 1990, went from a city where things were socially on either extreme, wealthy or poor, to UCSD, where, “kids don’t really care what they look like.” Brittany is adjusting from a small city where she has known everyone her entire life, to Triton’s college campus where she doesn’t know any of the students draped in blue UCSD sweaters.

“To come here, I knew I’d have to be more outgoing…it’s just like practice [for college]."

Brittany made the trip from Orange to UCSD’s campus because of a program called Academic Connections, which prepares students for college experiences and classes. On the subject of adjustment, she says that life here is very different than in her home. On a normal school day, she wakes up, goes to her classes, plays soccer and studies. She calls herself a "dork" when it comes to school because she would rather study than hang out with friends. This represents a difference from a day in the life at UCSD's Academic Connections, where she says "it's relaxed," and she enjoys going out or participating in the various activities the program sets up for students.

When asked if she believed that the program was preparing her well enough for college, she replied that the social preparation was “mediocre,” because in college, you don't have a residential advisor watching over you and there isn't a structure that requires students to wear blue id badgesor follow a specific schedule of when you're allowed to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner. When commenting on the rule about not using the staircases in dorms, Brittany adds to her college preparation critique, “oh, and you're allowed to take the stairs in college."

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