Fresh seaweed soup. Crispy vegetable spring rolls. Chicken dipped in a sweet, tangy, sauce. The delicious aroma of Chinese food makes me forget that I have a midterm for which I should be studying. Instead, I am at a restaurant called Sang Kee Noodle House for the M&T Freshman Dinner.
We have filled two tables with M&T students, and we start to engage in conversation over this delicious food. We end up talking a lot, talking about our homes, our backgrounds, our ambitions. My roommate Danielle describes her desire to travel, and Jeff, the member of the M&T Club board who organized this dinner, discusses his passion for transport. At the other table, an M&T student named Matt excitedly tells everyone about his idea for a start-up. My initial incentive for this dinner was perhaps the food, but by the end, I am fascinated by the diversity of the M&T community, what all these individuals have done, and what all they plan to do.
People ask me many different questions about college and my college decision. Most commonly, they ask what I enjoy most about college, or whether it was worth choosing Penn over a full ride to my state university, Rutgers. I now realize that my answer to both these questions has a common root: the people. Being in M&T has exposed me to a group of people unlike any other on this campus, and each day, I am humbled by what I learn. This is why I say that without a doubt, one of my best college experiences yet has been bonding with my fellow M&T students at the Freshman Dinner.