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Meet the Scholar: Patricia Calderon, Class of 2021

“I’m so grateful for the space Chicago Scholars offers us to work at all times, and for the passionate counselors and mentors who have helped me present my best self to colleges. Chicago Scholars keeps me on track and has guided me so much through the college process.” 

– Patricia Calderon, Class of 2021
Whitney M Young Magnet High School

When Patricia Calderon heads to college next summer, she will be the first person in her family to attend college.  As a first generation American and soon-to-be first generation college student, Patricia knew she wanted to go to college but didn’t know where to begin in the confusing admissions process. Then she found out about Chicago Scholars.

“I decided to apply to Chicago Scholars because I knew they could give me the resources I needed to be successful in my college journey. As a first generation student, my parents can’t offer much guidance in the college process. Chicago Scholars really gave me the help I needed reach my full potential.”

Now, after a few months and many counseling sessions, workshops and meetings with her mentors, Patricia Calderon has completed applications to Stanford University, University of Pennsylvania, University of Southern California, Pitzer College, Amherst College, and Colby College.  She will be interviewing with all of these schools at the Onsite Admissions Forum on Tuesday.

She says:

“I’m so excited for Onsite! I really love all the schools on my Onsite list, which is why I’m so grateful for the chance to speak to the admissions officers so they can learn more about me and I can learn more about their school. An opportunity like this is so rare!”

Patricia’s Vision for the Future  

In college, Patricia plans to pursue environmental studies and environmental science. She believes that climate change is one of the most urgent issues facing the world today.  Her passion for sustainability led her to co-found the Chicago Youth Alliance for Climate Education, which she helps lead after school and hopes to develop further after graduating college.  She can’t wait to get to college to dive even deeper into environmental studies. She is also eager to just be on campus!

 “I’m most excited to begin a new adventure in a new place with new people, studying something I really love.”

About Patricia

Patricia is a senior at Whitney Young Magnet High School and will graduate this spring. She is actively involved in an organization she co-founded that is dedicated to environmental education and activism called the Chicago Youth Alliance for Climate Education.  She is also part of her school’s Student Council, National Honor Society, Latino Unidos, and Ecology Club.  She plays in her school’s wind ensemble band and even got a chance to perform at Carnegie Hall. She lives in the Midway / Clearing neighborhood of Chicago with her family.