Perspective of a Graduate

By Leslie Min, 2017 UTP Graduate

Hi, I’m Leslie, an exuberant individual who loves to joke around and laugh. I’m currently seventeen years old and finishing up my second year at UBC Science. The UBC campus location for Transition makes it a convenient place to visit and during the year I enjoy opportunities to return to this old, wooden building which I consider my second home:  the chatter-filled hallways lined with exorbitant projects and artwork, the exciting classes replete with hilarious stories and dumbfounded expressions, and above all, my beloved teachers and classmates. The experiences I had in this program have changed me in ways I never imagined possible resulting in both confidence and dedication to my academic goals, skills to produce good quality work, and heightened curiosity about what I can pursue and create with my life.

But our journey through Transitions wasn’t just one of happiness. My classmates and I shed our share of tears of frustration and disappointment, suffering from bad habits and lack of time management and organization skills.  We stayed up long, unpalatable nights to finish assignments, tried to find motivation when we didn’t have any, and battled with doubts and the rigour of a workload that we had never before encountered. How we managed to pull through was neither by miracle or magic, but rather through hard work and the support we gave to one another. We were all for one. Every time someone was suffering or feeling lost or alone, someone offered loving support and genuine understanding. There were many occasions of late nights we spent studying together via social media. When one of us was losing confidence and feeling overwhelmed, the rest of us would tell him or her: “You can do it; I believe in you”. That mutual and reciprocal support helped us tremendously in our journey of learning and development during Transitions, and we are still supporting each other although it is, two years since we graduated.

Despite the difficulties inherent in the program, everyday life in Transition was as enjoyable as life could possibly be. Every morning, I walked into the building with a smile and was greeted warmly by any number of students chatting in the lounge. Classes were always filled with excitement and hysterical laughter as we found new connections and understandings and created our own bizarre perspectives. During breaks and lunch, people would be messing around with each other, begging for food and stationary, and chatting and laughing in the pure delight of each other’s company. Sometimes when the school day ended I would be tired and think “Finally, time to go home”.   But most of the time my thought was “Aww, too bad it’s time to go home!” because I loved being here with everyone so much.

I will never forget the wonderful people I’ve met in Trans as long as I live. We aren’t just a community; we’re family. I’ve made so many great friends in this program and shared so many wonderful experiences with all of them. All the pranks we pulled, the hilarious mistakes we made, the engaging classes we took together, the Model UN conferences and Reach tournaments we competed in, the exciting times we had at recreation, the amazing trips we’ve been on together, and all the happiness we shared, I will always cherish deep in my heart, for they are now a part of who I am.