As college acceptance letters begin trickling in this spring, Youth Radio’s Mali Dandridge turns to her mom for advice on what to expect in college.
I recently got admitted into my top choice college, Brown University. The moment that I found out, blood rushed to my face and I started crying tears of joy. But then a new anxiety set in: how I will be perceived as a black girl in the Ivy League?
I asked my mom if she had any advice. She attended Princeton in the ‘80s. She was washing dishes when I approached her, and she turned off the faucet and sat down.
My mom told me she liked Princeton and made lifelong friends. But she felt pretty insecure on campus. Then, she gave me advice on how to “get through” it all--as if getting through college, not enjoying it, was the objective.
She had to have faith in her abilities when others wouldn't. She pushed herself to ask questions, even if it meant seeming like the dumb black girl. I found it chilling that such an achievement would create so many struggles.