I sat uncomfortably in the small wooden chair in my high school’s college office, flipping through page after page of information about various colleges’ Anthropology departments in an outdated college guide. Sitting across from me was one of my peers who was volunteering his time to help confused students like me find the proper school. We talked for a little while but my mind was still not made up. I wanted to go to a good school but I was not sure which one was best. Later that night I talked to my parents and we decided that I should attend Los Angeles Pierce College, my local community college. At the time, many of my friends decided they wanted to travel far and wide to attend college and the thought of going to a community college was a big turn off for them. Looking back, I believe deciding to go to school at my local community college was one of the best decisions I have ever made. It has prepared me for my major and helped me get into my dream school, UCLA.
Over the course of two years at Pierce College I have taken several amazing anthropology classes, along with other classes that I felt will help me become the inspirational anthropological documentarian I aspire to be. The first major thing I really enjoyed about Pierce was their wide range of classes. Courses I have taken include: film making; the history of documentaries; Latin American history through films; amazing Spanish courses; cultural anthropology courses such as the study of magic, religion, and witchcraft; and an archaeology field class. The range of classes available, especially at a community college level, astounded me.
Pierce College not only had some of my favorite classes, they had some of my favorite teachers. During my high school years there were only a few teachers that I really loved. At Pierce, there have only been a small handful of teachers that I didn’t love—even then, I still liked them. My Spanish teacher, for example, made me want to change majors into Spanish—that’s how wonderful she was. All three of my film teachers have been absolutely amazing. They introduced me to many inspirational documentaries and documentarians, along with techniques, that will continue to influence my film style for the rest of my life. Finally, the anthropology teachers at Pierce inspired me to continue my education as far as possible. When I found out that many of my anthropology teachers attended UCLA I knew it was the proper school for me to transfer to.
Now that I officially got into UCLA I know that going to Pierce was the best route to take. If I went to a four-year right out of high school I wouldn’t have gotten into such a prestigious school. While my decision to go to Pierce may have seemed like a bad one back in high school, I know that it was the smartest choice I could possibly make.