During Ride the Tide, the Daily Gazette had the opportunity to talk with a few prospective students about their college application experiences and decision to visit Swat.
Daily Gazette: What was it about Swat that first interested you about Swat? Why did you decide to apply, and have you been enjoying Ride the Tide so far?
Navin Sabharwal: I knew I wanted to go to a smaller college. My high school was also really small. I really got to know my teachers well and I felt that that really helped me learn a lot. I feel that at Swarthmore it would be like that too. I heard about Swarthmore from one of my teachers who went to Haverford and he was familiar with the Quaker ideals that were present at Swarthmore. I like the idea of a Quaker community that unites everyone.
Marian Firke: I chose Swarthmore because I am a convinced Friend, which means I wasn’t born Quaker but I decided I wanted to be Quaker. So, I was looking at a lot of schools with Quaker heritage and I really liked Swarthmore. I’m here at Ride the Tide because I got in early and I just wanted to meet some people.
Madeline Charne: This is one of the first colleges that I visited and I really just really fell in love with it the second that I walked on campus. It just really seemed that Swat had everything. The Honors program is what really convinced me, but it just seems like a happy place – but also an intense and passionate place where everyone really gets into what they are doing. I’m here because I got in early and it has been a torturous bunch of months and I kind of felt like high school was over once I got in.
Paloma Perez: I found Swat out of a really long, complicated series of connections. I had never heard of this school but people said that I would fit in really well here so I decided to take a look at it. I got hooked up with phone calls and my admissions interview went really well and I just couldn’t get enough of the school. I read blogs, I read everything you guys have, and when they offered for me to come to Ride the Tide, I was like ‘Why would I not do it?’
DG: What interesting things have you heard about Swarthmore or the students that attend?
Desheane New: It’s kind of quirky and I can relate to it. Despite the quirkiness, there’s still an open atmosphere; everyone’s really friendly, everyone’s not really intimidating and not obnoxious or pretentious. The people here are amazing. I think that everyone here is intellectually passionate and that’s what others see as nerdiness. Really it’s just an ability to converse about things on this deep level that everyone respects.
Marian Firke: My history teacher heard that I was going to Swarthmore and he said, “Oh Swarthmore students, they’re dedicated to their work and they’re really not social.” I said to him, “But everyone I’ve met is really friendly.” He just said, “That’s a faÃ§ade.”
DG: What are some strange or unique activities you did in high school or at anytime in your life? Do you have any interesting collections or talents?
Christine Pham: I have a periodic table of elements shower curtain and I’m working on a 1000 piece world map puzzle, it’s really hard. I like ceramics and reading.
Madeline Charne: I do a lot of theatre, a lot of dance, I work on the newspaper, and I do a bunch of other things. I was in the circus for a month. My dad dropped out of law school for a while and joined the circus so he took me back to the Ringling Brothers [Circus] for the summer.
Isabel Sacks: I’m on a tech crew for a television show at my school that airs on local cable and I’m obsessed with the fact that they have waffles in Sharples.