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A Chat with Lucas Verderese: The Admissions Process, Transitioning to College, and More

Eshaan Chaurasia
April 14, 2020

College admissions season has come and gone, and it seems that, for the most part, people have a general sense of what their next four years look like. Being the nosy sophomore that I am, I sat down with my friend Lucas Verderese (12), self-described “average second-semester senior”, to get a sense of how he feels about this fast-approaching transition in his life.
As the reality of leaving Hong Kong is approaching, Lucas is choosing between multiple offers. “For me, it was quite straightforward as I have a lot of family in LA and I have two really good friends going there, so I’ve always had my heart set on going to the college I got into in December, which is in LA.”
Obviously, his situation may be slightly different from those who don’t have much relations in the U.S. “A lot of people consider the academic side of it more than I did, considering things like researching the faculty of the University, the ranking of the program they’ve applied to relative to their other admissions, clubs and that sort of thing.”
He also spoke of the small but important distinctions between each college. For instance, climate (the warmer West Coast as opposed to the damper East Coast), different ambiances, and food all might factor into one’s decision. This was rather eye-opening to me, as I had never once considered that the quality of food might factor into someone’s choice of college.
Another theme was how increasingly real the reality of going to college has felt to him throughout the year. He told me that at the beginning of the year, he wasn’t so much concerned with the actual prospect of going to college so much as he was getting in. Even when he got his letter of admission, it didn’t make much of a difference as far as making the possibility more real.
However, he said that the reality and gravity of the situation fully set in when “I accepted my letter of admission, because that’s when it started to be less abstract and more real.”
This may certainly factor in to feelings of homesickness. Lucas said that missing Hong Kong might be particularly hard for him: this might very well be his last few months in Hong Kong due to his family leaving once he and his sister are off and away to college. “Others will be able to come back and visit frequently,” he said, “so I’m not sure about that.”
He also told me that there are some lifestyle elements that people are bound to miss in Hong Kong, such as the culture, food, and convenience. However, he thinks that a lot of people will “enjoy more freedom” that they might not necessarily have here. All in all, Lucas is generally looking forward to starting this new chapter of his life and we wish current seniors all the best in their transition.

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