Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Big Red by the Bay- A Father's View

My name is John Woo and I am Andrew Woo's father.

The event was extremely insightful and it gave me a lot to be proud to have my son participate in along with other students. Being able to meet the other alumni and current students, I was also impressed with what Cornell has to offer and has opened me to the educational opportunities in East Coast. It would definitely be a great college for any student to attend.

I had a chance to talk with Cornell alum, David Korda. He gave me an impression of how diverse the Cornell student body is. We talked about what Cornell is like, and what his plans are for the future. Healso gave my son, Andrew, a few tips about the campus life, different parts of social outtings, and hoped to see him during the three week stay.

I am excited for my son this summer and am thankful for this opportunity.

P.S. Go Big Red! I'm following Cornell in the NCAA tournament this season.


  1. John,

    Great to hear from you.

    One of the main goals of the Ivy League Connection is to open the eyes of our students (and their parents) to opportunities beyond the UC and Cal State systems. Our state schools are great schools but they’re not the alpha and omega when it comes to what’s out there.

    When our ILC students work with our professional college guidance counselor, Sue Kim, she emphasizes how important it is to find "that perfect fit" for each of our kids. With over 3,000 colleges and universities out there, why settle on only looking at those up and down our state?

    Even if Andrew and the others don’t matriculate to Cornell or the other Ivies, we hope this will open their eyes to opportunities they might not otherwise have even considered.

    And, unless you’re sitting on a big box of extra money that you’re willing to give to these schools, financial assistance may be important to you. We all want to pay our own way in this world but If Ajax University offers to pay for Andrew to attend their fine school, I’m betting it’s going to get your attention.

    When it comes to our state schools, they simply don’t have the money to offer our kids. The money’s not there. And if they start attending these state schools, the price can easily escalate beyond what may be affordable and still no scholarship money to ease the burden.

    Many of these smaller private schools have money available to help. Sometimes it can even be a lot cheaper in the long run attending these smaller schools than it is to attend Cal or UCLA.

    A lot of decisions have to be made to find that perfect fit and we want to make sure that our kids are armed with the right information before they try to make those decisions.

  2. John,

    It looks like this was an eye opening event. It is clear that you left with a better understanding about what happens at an Ivy League University.

    Andrew will have a lot of positive memories from his time at Cornell. I am sure that he will apply to a diverse group of colleges and he will be armed with insight from having participated in the Ivy League Connection.

    Parents are pivotal to all that we do with this program. Your interest and enthusiasm means a great deal and helps shape a better appreciation for the number of quality schools that exist throughout the country.

    As Don stated, our ILC students need to find a "perfect fit" for them and then use their talents, skills and drive to propel them forward into the world of work. I am sure that Andrew is well on his way and that he will be a better person for being a part of the Ivy League Connection.

    Right now we are seeing the impact the program is having not just at Pinole Valley High School, but across the district. I am sure that you have found this to be refreshing.

    Please continue to post and keep us updated with your thoughts and impressions.

    Take care.

    Charles T. Ramsey, Esq.
    School Board Member
    West Contra Costa
    Unified School District