Juniors Take on Colleges


Desiree Pico

University flags pictured in Mrs. Julie Vivian's college advising office.

Desiree Pico, Section Editor

Each year at TERRA, juniors eagerly await the arrival of their college trips, and now, the wait is over! Taking place from January 18-20, 2017, select juniors will have the opportunity to visit five different universities in Florida with their friends. This trip allows students to take tours of campuses and housing sites for the University of Central Florida in Orlando, Florida State University in Tallahassee, University in Florida in Gainsville, University of South Florida in Tampa, and Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers. While nearly two hundred juniors hope for a spot on the trip, only ninety will be chosen by lottery.

“If  get chosen to go, I’m expecting to find out what classes they have to offer and financial aid information and other things that would make me want to go there,” says Isis Gonzalez. This is a shared expectation for the upcoming trip, as many juniors simply “want to explore [their] options” for college, like Lauren Cardentey put it.

Many find this trip to be very helpful in the college decision-making process. Senior Veronica Junco, for example, is one of these students.Regarding the trip last year, she said, “I found it really enlightening. We were able to visit colleges outside of FIU and UM, and it was really interesting to see the different types of campuses out there. [This trip] really lets you take in that there are so many other colleges out there.” Junco maintains that this trip aided her in her decision to not only apply to University of Florida– one of the colleges visited on last year’s trip– but also in the realization of her desire to apply out of state as well.

Mrs. Julie Vivian, TERRA’s CAP Advisor, and one of the chaperones for this trip, is a strong advocate for the college trips. “It’s a chance for students to kind of see the universities outside of the ones they normally see. When they get to view the campus from the eyes of a current student, it provides them a whole other unique aspect of what their potential lives could be like on that campus.” According to Vivian, this trip could play a major role in the student’s journey toward independence, starting with the realization that “it’s okay to leave home.”

This trip can often be a defining moment for juniors in their search for the “right college,” if they choose to go.

As exciting as this trip may be, many worry about whether or not they will be one of the ninety selected to go. “I’m really excited to go on this trip, so I really hope I will be one of the ones selected,” says Sushmita Persaud, who hopes to attend the University of Florida. Many students hope to attend a college to expand their career choices. “I want to be a pediatrician,” states Persaud, “so I want to make sure I get a college education that will help me with that.”