Ellie Bui 2019 IVC Foundation Scholarship Recipient

Ellie Bui 2019 IVC Foundation Scholarship Recipient


Good morning! How’s everyone doing on
this beautiful Wednesday that we don’t have any class at all? [cheering] Yes. First and
foremost, I would like to say thank you to IVC Foundation, faculty staff, guests,
and fellow scholarship recipients. And last but not least, the amazing donors,
with whom this would not be possible. Your stories, our stories, and my story
would not be possible. So, let me start with mine. I’m finishing up my third year
here at IVC as a biological sciences major and will transfer in the fall. I
was born and raised in Vietnam until my family moved to the US about five years
ago. We decided to move so I could receive a better education and better
opportunities to pursue my dream of becoming a doctor. We knew it would be a
difficult and challenging journey, starting a new life in a different
country with new cultures and traditions. So, with my limited English, I submerged
myself into American culture by watching Hannah Montana, The Suite Life of Zack
and Cody, and High School Musical, where Zac Efron enunciates perfect English.
Sure, I struggled a lot during the first few weeks of my junior year of high
school. It was really hard understanding what my teachers and classmates were
talking about. You see, in Vietnam I had two hours a week to learn
English. And trust me, their accents were a lot different from what I was used to
hearing. But that did not bring me down. I would go to school early and stay after
to ask for help from my teachers and my friends. I would say up late to do
homework and prepare for the next day’s lecture. In the end, my hard work paid off.
I not only got good grades but I also gained trust and respect from my
teachers and friends to be elected as president of two clubs of my high school.
At the end of my senior year of high school I got the news that I was
accepted to UC Berkeley. [applause] Thank you. I started to research and ultimately
found detriments with going to Cal, and benefits with going to a local community
college. So, who’s got two thumbs and chose Irvine Valley College over
Berkeley? This girl. [applause and cheering] I know, I know. Who would reject Berkeley to go to
community college, right? But I have never once regretted that decision. Through
every semester, every class, and every opportunity I’ve come across, I am more
certain that I made the right decision. If I had gone to Berkeley, I wouldn’t
have experienced all these leadership opportunities of being involved with
Associated Student Government, Circle K International Club President, an ELEVATE peer
mentor, and Honors Program ambassador. If I hadn’t chosen IVC I wouldn’t have been
able to establish meaningful relationships with my professors,
classmates, and program directors. I wouldn’t have benefited from the warm
engagement of a smaller class size compared to the chilling effect of a
large lecture hall. And if I hadn’t spent my time here at IVC, I wouldn’t have been
exposed to all these amazing scholarship opportunities and I wouldn’t be here
today sharing my story. So yes, I know I made the right choice and I appreciate
and value every single second and opportunity I’ve had ever since I
started school here at IVC. IVC shaped me to be the person that I am today. Before
I end, I have one last thought that I want to share. As I said in front of all
of you today, I’m truly in awe of the donors who are here. Every one of them
invested in us and in our futures. While receiving a scholarship can make anyone
feel special, I can only imagine how it feels to give one. I hope that one day I
am able to have the experience of awarding a scholarship to another
promising IVC student and I hope that all of you may one day do the same.
Thank you again to everyone who made today possible.
Thank you for giving me this opportunity to share my story. And thank you Irvine
Valley College. Pew! Pew! Go Lasers! [applause]

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