So, to get started can you tell me your name, the year you are in school, and your favorite subject?
My name is Justice Wright. I’m a senior at Cesar Chavez, and my favorite subject is math. I like that there’s a right and wrong answer.
Do you have any hobbies or extracurriculars?
I love cheerleading, and I’ve been cheering for about seven years now. I hope I can continue that journey in college if I can make it. Fingers crossed! I also like doing things with the government. I’m not really into the politics, but I like learning about it and having the connection and community.
Can you talk about how Minds Matter has impacted you and your goals?
The SAT prep, different mentors we have, and speakers we host all help prepare us for what we need in the future. For example, with the SAT prep, it taught me to know what to look for that other students I took the tests with didn’t have. Some of them hadn’t ever taken an SAT-type test before, so it was a nice advantage to have.
Can you share a favorite memory you’ve had with Minds Matter?
My favorite memory is when we went on a scavenger hunt about two years ago. I loved it. It was fun, with everyone pitching in ideas on what to do first and what we can do next. Going around the city, going to places I haven’t been yet, and hanging out with people from all the different groups (sophomore, junior, senior) together was really cool.
What else happened at the scavenger hunt?
There was this one challenge where we had to build “MMDC” as as a group, and I was the “D”. I thought that as a cheerleader, I would be flexible enough to just touch my toes and curve my back a little bit, but it was a struggle. It worked in the end though–I still have the picture!
Can you talk about some big things that you’ve learned from your mentors?
Do not procrastinate. Do not do it. Having a mentor there helps keep you on top of the things, though. One of the things I’ve learned is that you have support. Everywhere you go, whether it’s your teachers, professors, family, or mentors, they’re there for a reason and help keep you motivated. But don’t procrastinate, because you’re going to regret it in the end.
So your mentors taught you to be proactive?
Yes, I was really struggling during winter of freshman year and the middle of sophomore year. Now that I’m leaving, I can go to college knowing that I just need to stay on top of things.
Can you talk about what schools you’ve applied to and what are your dream schools?
I’ve applied to a bunch–University of Michigan, Vanderbilt University, Seton Hall University, UPenn, Oregon State, and University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. My number one, which I had took a course at during junior year summer thanks to Minds Matter, is University of Michigan. I loved the campus, the spirit, and the dining hall. The food is delicious! I love the community they had, and I know that I would flourish as a student and grow as a person there. The school I go to is predominantly black and Hispanic, but University of Michigan is very diverse, so I know that I’ll grow as a person there as well.
Would you recommend Minds Matter to others?
That’s not even a question, of course I would recommend it. You have so much support here and you know that you’ll learn. You should come in with an open mind and heart because you’re meeting new people, you’re telling them your dreams and hoping that they’ll be there to help you… which they are. It’s great to know that, especially for me, as I was pretty closed off.