First Year Voices: Ariana Blake from Jamaica

Montego Bay.

Today we feature Ariana Blake who is 17 years old and from Montego Bay, Jamaica. Ariana is a freshman Biological Sciences major and loves going to the beach.

When you wake up in the morning what are you most looking forward to in that day?

The first thing that I think of in the morning is, ‘Okay, I am going to get some work done.’ Then after that I start planning out my day, like what I want to eat, what classes I have that day and what I want to study. I look forward to classes and doing work, especially with COVID that’s all I can really do.

Ariana smiling near a tree, behind her a driveway and houses. She is wearing a black sweater with light blue denim jeans.

Were you nervous to start at Rowan?

Yes, I was really nervous. I am from Jamaica so starting school in another country, I didn’t know how I was gonna go about that. When I started out, I thought everyone was going to know each other. I was afraid I would be the only one not from New Jersey or even America. I was really nervous but very excited.

Why did you choose Rowan?

When I stepped on the campus for the first time I said to myself, ‘Wow this is where I want to be.’ I also have family who are 10 minutes from Rowan and my cousins convinced me to go on a tour at Rowan. When I stepped onto campus I fell in love. Then when I started talking to the admissions team, they were very welcoming and nice. It gave me insight as to how the students there are and I really liked it.

Ariana on a balcony, near a body of water, wearing a cheetah print dress.

Have you gone to any virtual events?

Yes I have, I have gone to peer education events. I am a part of the American Medical Association, Bronze Leadership Program and Pre-Health Society. This helps me get to know students and how American schools work. That does help calm my nerves.

What advice would you give to your high school self about choosing a college?

I would tell myself to do better in math because it would have helped me now. I would also tell myself to not stress so much. I wish I did not stress as much as I did about it. Lastly, I would say to myself, ‘Not to worry, you got this.’

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Story and photography by: 
Stephanie Batista, sophomore Music Industry major