What made you go looking for a summer program like Leadership Academy? Well I am really interested in politics and different people’s views and opinions. I figured this program would give me the perfect opportunity to express my opinions and to hear other people’s. I also love Stanford and I figured it would be awesome to go there and spend time on the campus. Leadership Academy was your first experience with a leadership oriented summer program, were your satisfied with the material that was covered? Were the daily lessons interesting? Yes I thought that overall they were. The language seminar was really interesting to hear. I think overall we covered a wide range of material. I know the international relations and politics class was really engaging and then with environmental studies, I loved everything about that. I really loved it when we had group discussions because everyone would get fired up about their own opinion and it was fun. Also, the college essay and resume course was really helpful. Did you think there were enough workshops available? Do you feel they covered a diverse amount of topics? Yeah I do. It seemed like we covered a ton of material! I thought it was perfect for what I thought it would be. How did the seminar and workshops compare to your classes back home? They were very different. My classes back home are textbook based. Some of my high school teachers are better than others, but I really thought the seminars were more engaging and I learned a lot of new information. The seminars were more like college classes than high school. The staff usually used power point during the seminars. Dr. Leonce [Core Curriculum Director] was always really well prepared. We had some guest speakers [as well], but the [Abbey Road] staff was great. We [also] had a presenter who was a graduate student at Stanford come and talk with us during environmental studies about water issues and I really enjoyed that. How beneficial do you think this program was for you in both your academic goals and your life? As far as the college essay and resume workshop, that was extremely helpful. I have started that and I’m almost done with it. Dr. Leonce really helped me with that. The International Relations and Politics course was a good way to get involved and become more knowledgeable. I am familiar with the issues, but I still have a lot of learning to do. The environmental studies class really opened my eyes about international water issues and now I’m doing that in my school. So I thought the program was really beneficial overall and just being in California was great. Did you like the schedule of the program? Was there a good balance of academic work and breaks and activities? The classes did take up a lot of time, but in the early evenings we had free time for activities. On the weekends, the group went to Berkley and San Francisco, but both of those weekends I stayed with my friend who lives in San Francisco because I never get to see her and that was really fun. What type of student do you think would benefit from this type of program? I think that a student who is interested in liberal arts type classes would benefit. Back home, my school is very conservative and I am never really able to voice my opinion so this was really helpful because I could relate to other students. Also, I think someone who is open-minded and who wants to get out of their comfort zone. However, I really do think all types of students would benefit from this program.
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My experience with Abbey Road Programs at Stanford - by Zoe S.