After all the research, visits, and considerations, Taylor chooses her school.
As all of my friends who are juniors in high school continue to stress about raising their SAT score, do well on their AP exams, continue to raise their GPA, and attempt to find that "perfect match college" ... I am done!
One of the key deciding factors was Pepperdine's supportive network of faculty and students when it comes to disabilities. I also learned how important it was for me to talk with my professors and educate them about my arthritis.
The decision letters are in, the financial aid packages were no help at all, and to my parent's happiness -- and somewhat dismay due to the cost of college these days -- I have made my decision: Pepperdine University.
The weather is beautiful, the school is amazing, and hopefully my arthritis will be happy, too. Located in beautiful Malibu, California, I figure this will probably be the only chance in my life to live in such an expensive area of the country and get college credit for taking surfing lessons.
I managed to narrow down my 11 schools (the number I applied to) to the one that is the perfect fit for me.
I went out last Wednesday through Saturday to attend an accepted student reception, meet with professors, and have a meeting with the disability office. One of the key deciding factors was the supportive network of faculty and students when it comes to disabilities. During my meeting, I found out I will have access to note takers, extended time on exams, early class registration, and many other disability services. I also learned how important it was for me to talk with my professors and educate them about my arthritis.
The early class registration benefit is something I am really excited about -- not only because I get first choice of classes, but because I get to choose what time I have class. (With my arthritis, I always feel worse in the morning and if I can avoid that 7 a.m. class, I will perform much better.) There's also the obvious concern of just getting to the classroom.
Pepperdine is a small campus -- only 3,300 undergraduate students -- which will give me an opportunity to get to know my classmates and professors. Also, it isn't too bad having a dorm room overlooking the Pacific Ocean!
Up next: finishing these last four weeks of high school and graduation!