Irvin Gomez ’14 and Abigail Macias ’14 are dedicated to helping college hopefuls through the sometimes difficult experience of applying to college and adjusting to college life. Recipients of the Center for Student Opportunity’s (CSO) Opportunity Scholarships, they have both joined a team of fellow Opportunity Scholars who write about their college experiences on the CSO’s Opportunity Scholars Blog. The blog, which features 10 sophomores and 10 first-year students from across the country, aims to provide insights into the college application process, academics, and college social life from first-generation college students.
Abigail Macias ’14 (left) and Irvin Gomez ’14, both recipients of the Center for Student Opportunity’s (CSO) Opportunity Scholarships, blog about college life for the CSO College Center website. (photo by Joseph Mehling ’69)
When he was 10, Gomez’s family moved from Mexico to Waukegan, Ill., where he graduated as the first male Latino salutatorian from his high school. As the first in his family to attend college in the United States, Gomez hopes to inspire his younger brother to follow in his footsteps.
“I believe that the greatest way to honor the sacrifice of my parents [in moving to America] is by earning a degree from Dartmouth,” Gomez writes on his blog. “Through my blog, I am able to give advice that would have been helpful while I was looking for the college that was right for me,” says Gomez. “I can give insight into what to expect from college in regards to academics and social life.”
Macias is the oldest of four children and was born and raised in Watts, Calif. She now resides in Sparks, Nev., and hopes to double major in economics and political science with a minor in biology. “Motivation, determination, and dedication are invaluable in the pursuit of higher education, but it’s also important to have people who believe in you,” writes Macias on her blog, adding that she is grateful to her family and others for their support.
Macias and Irving believe that their blogs are an excellent platform for communicating with their peers.
“Through my blog, I am able to give advice that would have been helpful while I was looking for the college that was right for me,” says Gomez. “I can give insight into what to expect from college in regards to academics and social life.”
“There are organizations that help you get to college but not afterward,” says Macias. “The great thing about the CSO College Center is that it sees you through college. That’s the best aspect of the program.”