Friday, May 20, 2011

The Ivy League of the South

Some would say we’ve lost our focus.  How could The Ivy League Connection send our students to a school that isn’t a part of the Ivy League?  Vanderbilt is a full 750 miles from Columbia University, even further away from Harvard and Cornell and is significantly closer to Dallas than it is to Brown.  They even talk funny there.

BUT…Vanderbilt is claimed by some to be The Ivy League of the South so we’re compelled to send three of Pinole’s finest to Nashville to find out for themselves.  Aiyana Hedeen-Garrett, Kye Duren and Julia Chang will trek east along with chaperone Yolanda Bulls where our three Spartans will study World Religions.
Tonight, though, the ILC team gathered at Perbacco in San Francisco where we were joined by four recent Vanderbilt Alums.  Rachelle Soderstrom (’04), John Tilsch (’04), John Labiak (’08) and Tyler Sanchez (‘10) shared with our group their experiences and insights about attending Vanderbilt.

Strangely, all four of our alums hail from areas other than the South.  Something about Vanderbilt called out to them and changed their lives forever.
Several of us noticed that our three Vanderbilt cohorts seemed to hang on every word coming from the mouths of our alums.  They were soaking in every bit of knowledge they could.

As much as the conversation enthralled me, I didn’t lose my focus so when the food was brought out I gave it the full respect it deserved.  Some had the plate of ribs and they looked awfully nice but I’m betting that those of us who had the duck got the better end of the deal.  Just my opinion, mind you, but it’s based on having eaten almost every day for better than a half century.  Experience should count for something, shouldn’t it? 

No matter how the argument goes with regards to the entrée, there simply could not be any controversy when it came to the hot chocolate cake thingy they put in front of us for dessert.  If the lights had been a little dimmer and there was any way to distract those sitting close to me, I would have swapped my empty plate for their full one and I’d still be there scarfing down a few more of those delectable goodies.

Good food aside, though, one of the benefits of this evening’s event is that we met some new friends that we can call on to work with our youth and provide them guidance about yet another fine university for them to consider.

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