Esme Bruce-Romo, ‘18, (third from left) participated in the De Colores program, in which students go to Tijuana and the U.S.-Mexico border. The program is grounded in service, accompaniment and community, Bruce-Romo said. According to Bruce-Romo, while visiting Friendship Park, the students spoke with Maria Teresa Fernandez, a photographer who has been documenting events and changes at the border for about 17 years. (Photo courtesy of Bruce-Romo)

FRESHMAN FOCUS: Esme Bruce-Romo, ’18, returns to her roots at LMU

Esme Bruce-Romo, ’18, attends Loyola Marymount University (LMU) in Los Angeles. She is majoring in Chicana/o and Latina/o studies (CLST) and minoring in Spanish.

Q: How was the transition to college life?

A: I had a pretty smooth transition into college life. I felt pretty prepared academically, and I was able to figure out a schedule and workload that works well for me fairly quickly.

Q: Do you like LMU?

A: I really like LMU so far, and I think it is a really good fit for me. I have gotten good at managing my time well while participating in different activities outside of class. I enjoy the freedom and the resources available to do almost anything I would want to do.

Q: What is your favorite part about LMU?

A: My favorite part so far has been the people. I have met and become friends with some really cool people and have had the opportunity to learn from great professors.

Q: What classes are you taking?

A: Last semester, I took Art in the Age of AIDS (my first-year seminar), Philosophical Inquiry, Spanish Stylistics and Composition and Intro to Chicana/o and Latina/o Studies. This semester, I am taking Rhetorical Arts, In Search of a Way (my theology class), Intro to Hispanic Literature and Politics of Mexico.

Q: Which class is your favorite?

A: Last semester, my favorite class was definitely Intro to Chicana/o and Latina/o Studies. I learned something every single class period, and my professor was super inspiring and motivating. I never really got to learn about the information I learned in CLST in any history class before, so all of the information presented was so eye-opening to me. Usually, history tends to share one narrative or a limited perspective, and ethnic studies courses are so important because they show that people who often do not have a voice in traditional history narratives are just as important and necessary to understand the past and present.

Q: Are you participating in any sports or clubs?

A: I am in the Latino Student Union (LSU) and Spanish Club, and I occasionally go to the Black Student Union (BSU) meetings. The Spanish Club actually produces a bilingual literary magazine every year, kind of similar to the Glass Knife. Since most of the executive board members of the club have graduated, my friend and I are now members of the executive board for Spanish Club. I am also thinking about joining a service organization this semester.

Q: How do you like those clubs?

A: I enjoy participating in all of them a lot. I have made a lot of friends through each of them, especially LSU, and they all offer great resources and support for underclassmen.

Q: Did Country Day prepare you well for college?

A: I felt academically prepared going into college; I did well in all of my classes last semester. Even though my classes seem like they are going to be a little harder this semester, I think Country Day got me used to the workload.

Q: Is there anything you wish you had known before college started?

A: Over the summer, we had over-the-phone appointments with our advisers so they could walk us through registration for the first semester. I took one of the later appointments because it was a little more convenient for me at the time, but I ended up having fewer classes to choose from. So I wish I had considered that before.

Q: Do you have any advice for the class of 2019?

A: I would suggest taking advantage of a fresh start to create new habits and just try to become a better person. I personally became a lot more productive and proactive than I was in high school.

Five-star or subpar?  

Food: ☆☆☆☆
School Spirit: ☆☆
Location: ☆☆☆☆☆
Clubs: ☆☆☆☆
Student/Teacher Interactions: ☆☆☆☆

—By Arjin Claire

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