Letter from the 2013-2014 Brown Quest Liaison
Welcome to the Quest Scholars page for Brown University!
My name is Christopher Pineda, your Quest Liaison at Brown. I serve the Quest Scholars Network by relaying information between our community here at Brown and the Quest headquarters in Palo Alto, California. You will see that Brown is a unique place that fosters intellectual and personal growth. I was amazed at the wide selection of courses that were available and the resources I had at my disposal. I'm telling you, you're going to want to shop every class out there (can you say "open curriculum"?). That was me during my first semester. Since then I have been able to successfully maneuver around campus, joining many different organizations from Phi Kappa Psi to the ALANA mentoring program.
My goal for our QSN chapter is to successfully construct a community environment where students can come if they need help or just want to hang out with some really amazing students. It is vital that we build a strong network that not only has a presence on campus, but also works to improve the Pprovidence community by visiting local high schools and telling them about QuestBridge. That is our mission because every student, regardless of race, creed, or gender, deserves the opportunity to attain higher education. The QSN is our opportunity as Brown students to make that a reality.
Check out our page and support the Brown QSN Chapter!
Christopher Pineda, Brown '15
Christopher Pineda, '16
Webmaster, Class of 2015
Hello! Angel Gutierrez Mejia is the name, and Portland, Oregon is where I am from.
I was born in Los Angeles and have traveled to Mexico, which is where my parents are from. I would describe myself as an avid gamer, gym junkie, and avid TV show watcher. My current favorite TV show is Breaking Bad. This will be my sophomore year, and I am planning on declaring an Economics concentration with the intention of doing honors.
I currently serve as QuestBridge's Webmaster, as the Latin American Student Organization's Financial Officer, and am a member of MEChA. Brown was the school I applied to because it seemed like a fun idea, though I never actually intended it to be a serious choice, since I didn't know much about it. All I can say now is that I would not be as happy as I am anywhere else, and I absolutely love the atmosphere and community here. My favorite dish from Brown is the hot buffalo wings; my diet takes a break every day they have wings. From the naked doughnut run to the hot buffalo wings, Brown is quirky and amazing! I know every new student will come to love Brown as I have, and I am ready and excited to welcome all of the new faces to Brown!
Historian, Class of 2015
My name is Ganaelle “Ellie” Joseph. I am the current Historian of Quest Scholars @ Brown.
I am a pre-med sophomore, studying Neuroscience. I live in Florida, but I am originally from Haiti. As a first-generation college student, I never thought that I would be where I am today. I remember during my college application process, I never told anyone what schools I was applying to other than the teachers who wrote my recommendations. There was always that fear that I would not get into the schools that I had applied to and that my peers would make fun of me once they learned of my failure. Furthermore, none of my counselors knew what QuestBridge really was. Therefore I had no support from them. In fact, if my mother didn’t nag me about it I would not have applied to any of the QuestBridge partner colleges. I just took a chance since I did not have a better option to apply to these universities. Growing up, my mother always told me that if I want to do great things and go places, I must find a way to fund it because that is the one thing that she could not do for me. That is why I consider myself very lucky for choosing the right week to clean out my overcrowded inbox to find the free QuestBridge application, actually applying, and miraculously being accepted to Brown University. I was so excited to get in that I didn’t even visit the school. I just showed up on the first day. I had no doubt in my mind that Brown was and still is the perfect place for me to grow academically and socially.
I feel like I have accomplished so much in the one year that I have been at the university. On top of doing well academically, I recently joined the Alpha Chi Omega sorority. I volunteer for a Suicide Prevention & Listening Hotline. And over the summer of 2012, I took a class with Brown’s Health Services in order to get the Rhode Island license to be a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) with the school’s ambulance over the next couple of years. While taking classes, I am also a member of Brown’s salsa team Alma Salsera, the Minority Association of Pre-med Students (MAPS), and the Language Society’s Spanish and French conversational groups. With all the things that I do, I feel that I have clicked with a large number of people allowing me to build the right support system in order to successfully graduate with the Class of 2015. I am having a great experience here at Brown and I am confident enough to say that everyone else who is currently there or will be attending in the years to come will feel the same.
Community Chair & Co-President, Class of 2015
Panamanian and Polish, born by the ocean in Florida, raised in the mountains in Colorado, I am the combination of many different things.
As such a mix, I've always loved environments where all my diverse interests can mingle. Brown is the epitome of diversity--in students and class possibilities.
I'm a pre-med concentrating in linguistics and French, a club volleyball player who works at the local coffee shop (the best one on The Hill), a model for Unhemmed, our online fashion magazine, and a member of the Brown University chapter of Kappa Alpha Theta. I volunteered abroad teaching English in the summer, and during the academic year, I'm lucky enough to be the Co-President of the Brown Quest Scholars Network chapter—meaning I can promote the organization that allowed me to come to Brown in the first place while helping to build a close-knit group of talented scholars.
At Brown, all of these things are possible. Having multiple interests across different disciplines is not just commonplace—it is greatly encouraged. I could not imagine attending any other university; Brown is ideal for me. Without QuestBridge, I never would have even thought of applying. Without my family, I would never have made it there in the first place.
My father passed away from leukemia when I was nine--part of why I want to become a doctor. After that, my mother raised me and my older brother, always encouraging and supporting us, insisting we always do our best. Her continual love and reassurance is helps me handle any and everything: stress, sports, school. My brother is my go-to man, my role model, and my close friend. He pushes me intellectually and can always make me laugh. Without them, and their assurance that my father would be proud, I would not be able to accomplish all that have done and aspire to do. I would not be the well-rounded, incredibly happy, and extremely fortunate student that I now am.
My greatest hope is that all students feel similarly about their schools. I know almost all Brunonians do.
Treasurer, Class of 2015
“Why?” It is human nature to ask why and seek out explanations for the unknown. As a human being, questions and curiosity infiltrate my mind incessantly.
As I grew, I asked question after question, attempting to gain the most thorough explanations about everything I encountered. It is my curiosity, persistence, and determination which developed my aspirations and delivered me to this prestigious institution that is Brown.
Born into a lower-middle-class family of five, surviving off the sole income of my conservative father, life has been a struggle of sorts. Being faced with the conflicts that arise due to the generational gap, the urban environment of my dear hometown Passaic, New Jersey, and the added dynamic of immigrant parents, I have become the persistent person I am today. Although it was difficult to concentrate in my family’s one-bedroom apartment, my interest and curiosity in the sciences brought me here to Providence, literally. A college education of any type would have been unaffordable for me without aid, but I have been privileged to receive financial as well as emotional assistance through QuestBridge as well as the Quest Scholars Network so that now I can call myself a true, fellow Brunonian.
In Rhode Island, I have had the opportunity to meet not only a diverse community of students, but I have also dived into some or Providence’s culture. As a pre-medical student and biology concentrator, I am primarily involved in the scientific community, but to satisfy my passion for dance, I am a part of the Salsa Club, Ballroom Dance Club, and South Asian Student Association, which have led to interactions and conversations with individuals that one could not even begin to imagine.
I aspire to become an ophthalmologist or pediatric surgeon following medical school. Currently during my summers, I am attending an internship/enrichment program at the University of Medicine and Dentistry in New Jersey and have completed my very first cadaver dissection! This only proves that if opportunity knocks, success is inevitable as long as it is met with determination and motivation.
Secretary, Class of 2014
I graduated as Salutatorian of East Granby High School in East Granby, Connecticut.
I am currently a junior at Brown University studying Business, Entrepreneurship, and Organizations. This year I will be serving as the secretary of Brown’s Quest Scholars Network.
In my time at Brown, I have participated in intramural volleyball, and I am also a member of the varsity softball team. I have also spent time volunteering at the Vartan Gregorian Elementary School and Judy’s Kindness Kitchen. My favorite aspect of attending Brown has been the opportunity to continue to try new activities and to take risks academically without restrictions.