Arnon Nakpitugs - First Prize Winner

For the seventh year, College Admissions Assistance, LLC (CAA) has awarded five of its graduating high school seniors a scholarship to use toward their college expenses. This year, Arnon Nakpitugs of Fresh Meadows, NY won the $1,000 First Prize. While travelling from San Francisco to Disneyland with his family, Arnon spoke with CAA over the phone about his college and career plans for the fall.   Arnon plans to attend The City College of New York in Manhattan where he will live at home for at least the first year or two while commuting to campus. He told CAA that the commute will take at least an hour each way by public transportation but it is something he is already accustomed to.   “I took a bus and a train to my high school each day so the commute to City College will be a lot like that experience,” he explained. “I want to commute because I’m not ready to live in the dorms with a bunch of other kids, but I may move closer after one or two years.”   With this long commute, Arnon says he is grateful that he will have more control over his class schedule than he did in high school. He is also excited to meet new people including his professors but will miss his high school experiences.   “It may sound ‘cliché’ but I will miss my friends the most,” he said. “High school went by really fast but I wouldn’t change anything about my time there – even the commute.”   In high school, Arnon participated in varsity tennis and was part of the Second Language Honor Society. In his spare time he enjoys playing handball with his friends, reading, and playing video games. Arnon explained to CAA that he is proud of his academic accomplishments and has been encouraged most by his mother.   “It’s a really big thing for me to go to college,” he said. “My mother has always supported me and my choices and has allowed me to find my own path.”   While at City College, Arnon plans to find a regular job to help with his college expenses and hopes to assist a professor with research. He will major in mechanical engineering and feels it’s a good fit because of his love for math and science along with his hands-on personality type.   Arnon said he chose City College based on their academic program, and while visiting the campus, learned from a student speaker about the mechanical engineering program.   “It really inspired me and confirmed that it is the right fit,” he said.   Arnon found CAA’s resources helpful when researching his career choices. “The personality assessment helped me discover myself and to narrow down my career choice,” he explained. He told CAA that the website videos and phone conversations with coaches helped him the most when planning for college.   “The video about writing essays was really helpful. I watched it several times!” he said. “CAA has helped me to become much more organized, which will be a needed tool in college. They helped me discover more about myself and where I should be headed.”