“I could not be happier that I took a year for myself between high school and college. It’s not that I didn’t feel ready for college, but that now, I really know how to engage and appreciate my experience here. My bridge year taught me about my passions and gave me time to explore the way the world works before I had to apply those things to my life here on campus. Plus, now I can connect with my all of my Tufts peers in a totally new and exciting way because of my bridge year experience.”-Madeline Weir
Madeline is now a first-year student at Tufts, where she is studying International Relations.
This is 1+4 alumnus Justin Mejia:
Justin was a Spain fellow in 2015-2016, and wrote this at the conclusion of his bridge-year:
“This Bridge year was the best thing that could have happened after graduating high school. Being able to explore new and amazing places while making a difference was truly incredible. I learned so much about the world and about myself which makes me feel ready and excited for college. ”
Justin has brought his 1+4 experiences with him and has done some incredible things on the Tufts campus already!
Starting today, we’ll be doing a weekly My 1+4 Story feature. These stories will focus on the experiences of our fellows in choosing the 1+4 program, and/or the impact of the 1+4 experience. Our first My 1+4 Story comes from current Spain fellow Jiyoon.
by Jiyoon Chon
“Normality is a paved road; it’s comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow.” –Vincent Van Gogh
For most of my life, I’ve been walking on the paved road. Sure, I excelled enough to get to where I am now, but still never really got off the beaten track. Introverted, quiet, polite, good grades, decent musician, frequent volunteer. Terrified of being put on the spot, slightly insecure and unconfident, usually conformed to the norms and status quo. I worked hard even though I didn’t really know where I was going, and fostered big dreams without knowing how exactly I was going to achieve them. Of course, along the way, I saw the dandelions peeking through the cracks in the concrete and smelled the wildflowers in the distance. I was comfortable, I was happy. But at the same time, I always felt like I was waiting. Waiting for some kind of big change, waiting for an opportunity to do something more, something crazy, something different.
by Mikel Quintana
Throughout my year so far I have continuously heard my host family talk about Sevilla, about their family, about their home, and about their beautiful city. Luckily during these holidays I was able to go with them to Sevilla and spend Christmas and New Years with them and their extended families’.