During her junior year of high school, Sarai Gonzalez found her email inbox overflowing with advertisements from numerous colleges. While she normally would not go through all of these messages, an email from the Templeton Honors College caught her eye. After reading a description about the 2016 Summer Scholars Program, Sarai decided to make the 2,700-mile trip to explore conversation in St. Davids, Pennsylvania.
Sarai Gonzalez is a freshman and member of the Cohort of 2017. She and her family live in the town El Sereno, which is located in Los Angeles, California. Originally, her family comes from Guadalajara, Mexico; Sarai’s parents immigrated from the city to the United States after they were married. Sarai has two older brothers, one older sister, and a brother who is just ten months younger than her.
In California, Sarai graduated from Francisco Bravo Medical Magnet High School. Being a multicultural school, the student body at Bravo was very diverse. During her time at school, she loved encountering the many people with different backgrounds from her own. Outside of school, Sarai played soccer since she was seven years old, and violin since she was eight. She pursues these hobbies on Eastern’s campus by playing intramural soccer, as well as performing violin during Wednesday Night Worship. Sarai also loves getting to know others better, by listening to their stories and being intentional in relationship with them.
In addition, Sarai enjoys reading for fun, especially outdoors. Her love for books drew her to the Summer Scholars Program to study Lord of the Rings with other students and Templeton faculty. It was her first time experiencing a classroom discussion of that style, and she found the conversations very engaging. Some of Sarai’s favorite highlights of the Summer Scholars Program were visiting Longwood Gardens and the Philadelphia Art Museum. During these field trips, she got to know her peers better as they experienced the beauty of each place together. Many topics from the morning chapel services stuck with Sarai as well, including a lesson from Dr. Richards on being still.
As for her studies, Sarai intends to major in Math and minor in Spanish. After graduation she hopes to become a highschool teacher. Overall, her favorite part of freshman year so far has been the community of Eastern and her Honors College cohort. Living far from home has been an adjustment, but Sarai says everyone on campus has made the transition much easier. She appreciates how welcoming her peers have been, and how interested they are in learning about her different culture. Sarai has also enjoyed taking classes and getting to know the wonderful professors of Eastern University.
Through much thought and prayer, Sarai arrived at the Templeton Honors College. The school is so blessed to have her joyful presence and insight on campus and in the classroom.
Grace Newman is a sophomore in the Honors College majoring in Middle Level Education with a concentration in Reading. She has served on the Templeton Student Council since January 2017, both on the Hospitality Committee and as head of the Council. In addition, she enjoys giving tours for Eastern Admissions and introducing visitors to the beautiful campus.