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The California State University

College Dreams Blog

College Dreams Blog

No matter who you are or how you’ve prepared for college, you’re bound to have a long list of questions. Our student ambassadors had college dreams just like you do and they worked hard to achieve them. Read their stories below and share your own with us on Facebook and Twitter!

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Marlene - photo

What Motivates Me to Pursue Higher Education

Posted by Marlene

This is the story of how a girl from downtown Los Angles adapted to a new environment and grew from her experiences, creating new ones to inspire others. My name is Marlene Guerrero, and I am the oldest of four children. My community, known as Skid Row, is in the heart of Los Angeles. Skid Row is a community filled with homelessness, drugs, and prostitution. According to the Los Angeles Times, In 2011, approximately 2,000 individuals were found to be living on the streets. The community I come from puts my ambitions in perspective and encourages me to aim high. In the future, my education will be my ticket back into my community where I will create change.

Tanya - photo

The Search for my True Passion

Posted by Tanya

When I first started college, I came in thinking that I wanted to be a nurse. I volunteered at a hospital for a year and a half. After taking a public speaking class, I realized that my passion wasn’t in nursing. I knew I wanted to work with people and I fell in love with the rush you get from public speaking. I used to be terrified of speaking in front of people, and now I am conquering my fear. I am now a communication major and I love my classes. I hope to work for a university after I graduate

Jade - photo

Focus on Classes, Tests, and Extracurriculars

Posted by Jade

Middle schoolers, I know college probably seems a million miles away, but believe me, time flies! The sooner you start thinking about college and what you’re interested in, the easier your choices and big decisions will be later on. High schoolers, not to scare you, but your time is now!


Classes—make sure you are taking the right classes that will make you eligible for college, such as the A-G requirements of the CSU and UC. Take as many college preparatory (AP and Honors level) courses offered at your school to remain competitive. Counselors and college advisors are an excellent resource to assist you with academic planning, so use them!


Tests—take advantage of any tutorials or workshops for the SAT and ACT. If your school offers the PSAT, take it, as it is very good practice. By the end of your 11th grade summer, you should have taken both standardized tests. That way, depending on your results, you can take them again early in your senior year.


Extracurricular Activities—get involved! Most colleges and universities don’t just look at academics but what you’re involved in during high school. Things like community service, sports, clubs, organizations or church.



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