Friday, May 16, 2014

ONE Market For the Brown-ONE and Brown-II Cohorts

Following up on the School Board meeting last night, the Brown-I and Brown-II cohorts went out to an eloquent dinner at One Market in San Francisco tonight.  We were to meet with previous alumni from Brown University as well as some of our sponsors at dinner.  The whole night began with meeting at the El Cerrito Plaza BART Station at 5:20 PM.  When everyone was accounted for, we all boarded the train.

On the ride to the restaurant, I looked around for someone new to meet and sit or stand next to from the ILC group, but unfortunately everyone that I saw had already found themselves an occupied pair of seats or someone else to talk to, so I had to settle for a seat with strangers who fell asleep and were listening to music.  Despite this, I was still able to enjoy the excellent view outside of the window.

We eventually arrived at One Market where we settled into a room and began to mingle among ourselves and the alumni of Brown.  I met with a former ILC member who also happened to be a graduate from Hercules High, Beilul, and asked her about how her life was at the university.  I briefly talked with some members of the Brown-II cohorts such as Muang Chao who I happened to play against during the TCAL badminton tournament just last week and YeonSoo Cho, who was seated at the same table as me later.  I also met two Brown graduates who happened to be roommates: Ms. Adrienne Eng and Ms. Nancy Schiff.  Ms. Schiff talked about her mock trial program that included De Anza and Kennedy High and Ms. Eng talked about her job at Logitech.  I recalled that Hercules had a mock trial program but was apparently not part of Ms. Schiff's program, so there's something that I'll have to ask our mock trial team about at Hercules. Finally, Mr. Ramsey instructed everyone to find their seats in order to begin our dinner.

Seated at my table besides myself were the geophysics majoring alumni Lauren Brodsky and Andrea Llenos, Sierra Lee, Yeon Soo, and of course the parents of the ILC students.  Upon sitting down, I greeted the two
Speaking with Ms. Llenos
alumni and began to converse and ask questions as much as I could.  Before sitting down with the two graduates I had never heard of the geophysics field of study (which involves subjects such as earthquakes) and became curious about the major.  Since I did not manage to get a full description of the topic, I will look into it more after my DNA course at Brown to see if it is something that I'm interested in.  Ms. Kronenberg then began the dinner speeches as our food began to come in.

The appetizer was a nice, refreshing salad for us to eat while Arnold and YeonSoo gave their excellent speeches.  Although I am not the biggest fan of salads, I do have to mention that the salad was better than any that I had tasted previously.  
Our excellent dessert
Following the speeches and appetizer came the entree, which was a choice between halibut or beef short rib.  Not giving into trend of almost everyone at my table choosing halibut, I chose the beef short rib and it was not a decision to regret.  The meal itself was heavenly and the beef was very tender, melting in one's mouth with every bite.

Of course, I cannot forget Mr. Ramsey's exceptional speech.  The point that stood out to me was the fact that "there is no 'I' in team." It helped me remember that I'm not in this program by myself, but that Jing, Arnold, Jack, and Kevin are all going to be with me, creating memories at Brown and having the opportunity of a lifetime.  

After the meal, I talked with the alumni a bit more and eventually dessert came: a nice rhubarb strawberry tart.  I savored the blissful treat knowing that it would be quite a while before I would be able to eat like this again.  

At the end of the dinner came the group photo with the current ILC students and Brown alumni.  After nice, clean instructions from Don once again, we quickly took care of the photo and proceeded to leave.
The lovely group photo
Unfortunately, we missed the first train we were expecting to take directly back home and were left to wait for about another twelve minutes before our next train arrived.  Thankfully, I found some people to speak with during the ride back.  I first had the honor to speak with Ms. Kronenberg about myself and was able to express my thanks to her for the ILC opportunity.  Halfway through the ride, we had to transfer trains where I was able to introduce myself to the Brown-II chaperone, Jenny, and had a conversation about physics with her and Mrs. Lee.  Finally, the night came to an end and we all arrived at the El Cerrito Plaza BART Station once again.  We all said our goodbyes and went our separate ways, looking forward to our next meeting at the orientation.

The whole night was an honor for me to attend and has gotten me even more excited to be at Brown with my cohort of 5 and our chaperone Ms. Scott.  Although a small group is fun and closer, I wonder if the trip would have been more fun with even more colorful people in addition to our cohort like Thao and Jenny. Regardless, I'm thrilled to go with just my cohort and enjoy my time and learning at Brown.  I feel that it's also necessary to mention that the number one restaurant of interest recommended to me was Dunkin Donuts by four different alumni, so there is one more restaurant to add to the try list.


  1. Two points here, Brandon. The first being that Dunkin Donuts is NOT a restaurant. Yes, you can get a cup of coffee and even a donut but that doesn’t quite qualify as a restaurant. The next thing you’ll be telling me is the vending machine outside the gas station is also a restaurant.

    The second thing is that we didn't miss the first train. We chose not to take that one because it would have taken us to San Jose. I don;t know anyone in San Jose so I thought we’d wait for the train that was going in our direction.

  2. Brandon,

    I am glad to hear you enjoyed the exquisite dinner as much as I did. The short rib would have been my second choice after the gnocchi (also superb).

    I think it's fantastic that you were able to learn about a new major (geophysics). So many undergraduates (myself included) go into their freshmen year not really understanding all the fields of study available to them, and thus might choose a major that is not always the best fit for them. Keep having those conversations and you will find your perfect niche.