11 Aug
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Spring 2016 Update From Iris Calderon Soto

My first year of college is over! I can’t believe how fast the time has gone by and how much I’ve been able to learn and achieve in these few months, I really cannot wait to see what the future holds. Spring semester I had a heavier course load and really had to refine my time management and prioritizing skills in order to obtain the grades I wanted. Being at a new school also meant having to familiarize myself with a new administrative system and setting, but I’m glad that I have some friends from high school here who were more than willing to help me get around my first weeks at CU Denver.

I took a variety of courses this semester, mostly because I was trying to finish my general requirements by this fall, but one class that I am happy I decided to take was my Race-Gender-Law-Public Policy (PSCI 3034). This was the first course where I felt intimidated not only by the amount of work and reading that was assigned but also by the professors, who made it clear they expected exceptional and thorough on assignments and in class discussions. The class exposed me to how the federal and state court systems work as well as how the law pertaining to race and gender has evolved over time. As I start taking classes for my Pre-Law minor the things I learned in this class will provide a good foundation.

While I was successful in the majority of my classes, there was one class I did really struggle in which was Trigonometry. It was frustrating because I had a tutoring session once a week and still struggled with understanding the material and I have always done well in math, including Algebra which I took last semester. I did end up getting a B-, which is not bad but not the grade I wanted, but now I know the steps I need to take to ensure I am achieving the best grades I can.

I also volunteered for Reading Partners, tutoring kids once a week to help improve their reading at a local elementary school. It was incredibly rewarding and I look forward to volunteering again this upcoming school year.

For the summer I decided to enroll in two classes that are required for my major those being Business Statistics and Professional Speaking.  I also am volunteering for a non-profit, Open World Learning, which runs STEM after-school programs and summer camps for inner-city students.

This year was not easy and there were times when I just wanted to give up or just do enough work to get by (C’s get degrees, right?), but I remember that there are so many people at CHOICE that believe in me and are willing to help me continue to succeed and achieve my goals. Thank you all for your immense support and encouragement.

Sincerely.

Iris Calderon Soto