Kailani Ridenour

Kailani Ridenour.jpg

University of California Los Angeles, Berkeley City College, University of California Berkeley

Gregori Class of 2014


Weighted GPA at Gregori: Above 4.0

SAT Composite Score (2400 Scale): 1850

Extracurriculars at Gregori: ASB President, FBLA President, Varsity Tennis Captain, Academic Decathlon Member, Key Club Member, Employee at Local Preschool, Volunteer at Multiple Local Organizations

What extracurriculars would you recommend listing on your application?

I would list all of them! Especially the ones you spent a lot of time doing and that you're passionate about. I also took on a lot of leadership roles in my activities and I think that those experiences are really important to list. Admissions just wants to get a full picture of who you are, so make sure that when you look at the list of activities you put down, you feel it represents who you are and what you've done.

When applying to colleges, did you consider applying to scholarships? When did you begin to look into them? How did you find scholarships to apply to?

I wish I applied to more scholarships that I really did. College is expensive! I always heard people say that college was expensive, but I never took it as seriously as I should have. Yu collect so much debt, and I think it all starts to sink in as you get closer to graduation (which is when you have to start paying it all back). It can be daunting, but I think putting in work while you're still in high school towards scholarships can make a difference because every scholarship helps.

Would you recommend going to a community college and then transferring to a different college? Why or why not? Is it easy to transfer schools?

My experience through college was very unique, because I started out at UCLA, then went to a community college, and am now attending UC Berkeley. I never expected to attend a community college, but because of my health problems, I had to leave and attend a school that was easier and closer to home. I think if you worked really hard to get into a four year university, you should attend! It meant a lot to me to go to UCLA (despite me being there for only one quarter) because I felt that that was what I had been working so hard for, and I finally got the payoff of all the work I did in high school. However, going to a CC saves you so much money, and it also leaves you with time to work and really explore your passions. It was only because I had so much extra time at a CC that I was able to intern and discover that I am really interested in working at nonprofits. If I had stayed at UCLA, I would have been so busy with school work that I would not have had the time to try new things and find what I love to do. Both systems have their unique benefits, and I would give it some thought before counting out one or the other as an option.