Throughout the 2018-19 academic year, College Possible Philadelphia will be profiling four students thanks to a grant awarded by NRG Gives, a charitable-giving program sponsored by the NRG Retail Charitable Foundation. The grant awarded by NRG Gives will support more students in the greater Philadelphia area get to and persist through to college graduation.
Egypt Maddy, a 2018 graduate of Jules E. Mastbaum AVT School, is a Philadelphia native, and she will be attending college at Penn State University Park as a Bunton-Waller Fellow, receiving full-in-state tuition room and board and will major in Premedicine. In addition to College Possible Philadelphia, Egypt is involved with HOSA Future Health Professionals, an organization that prepares members for a career in the health field, and Shawna’s House Inc., an organization that assists youth with handling real-world problems.
What are you looking forward to most about attending Penn State University Park?
I’ve always liked school and learning, so I’m excited to see how college classes are different from classes I took in high school. I want to get involved on campus and one activity I’m really interested in is THON, which is a huge dance celebration that takes place every year to help raise money for childhood cancer. I’m also a part of a program on campus [the Bunton-Waller Fellowship], and I’m excited to start interacting with my peers.
Why did you decide to attend Penn State?
I knew that I wanted to go to a larger school because I wanted to constantly meeting new people. Last summer I stayed overnight on campus and felt that everyone was so welcoming. Even though it’s a big school, everyone felt like family. While I was also looking at schools, I wanted to find a program that wasn’t the typical pre-med path of getting a degree in biology or chemistry. I wanted something a little different. During my overnight visit at Penn State, I attended information sessions with different departments across campus. When I spoke with the Health and Human Development Department, I learned about their Biobehavior Health program. I was instantly drawn to it because no other school that I looked at had a program like it, and it’s the program that I am a part of now.
What is the Bunton-Waller Fellowship that you are a part of?
The Bunton-Waller Fellowship covers the costs of my tuition, room and board and my meal plan. During my freshman year, I will live in Ritner Hall with other students who are a part of the fellowship. Every month, I have a meeting with the program’s director. [The person] acts like an academic advisor who I can talk to about how I am doing in my classes, if I am having any trouble with my classes and about life on campus. Once a month, all of the students in the fellowship get together for different meetings and events. We all will take an African American leadership class together in the fall, which I’m looking forward too.
How did your high school coaches support you in your journey to Penn State?
Throughout senior year, my coach Alexandra was always able to answer my questions. People never really tell you how long the college application process is. When it came to the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid), being a first-generation college student, no one in my family knew how to do it. She was there to assist me every step of the way, along with everything else I needed for the application process. She was also there to talk about what college would be like and what to expect, which was really nice.
Do you have a specific goal that you would like to accomplish during your freshman year and what steps will you take to make it possible?
My goal for freshman year is to get a 3.0 or higher GPA. I know that the first semester will be one of my toughest because I’m going to be adjusting to the whole college experience. I plan to use resources available to me on campus, like the tutoring center and math support center. I want to find a study group and put myself on a schedule to understand and develop better study habits.
By Ian Reitz