by Patty Bovie
They say when you walk in someone else’s shoes you know where they’ve been. But when you walk around a campus, and immerse yourself in the college experience, you know whether you can picture yourself there some day.
That’s what it was like for Audrey DiMarco who attended Wellesley’s Pre-College Summer Program twice - as a rising junior and rising senior. The program is designed for high school women looking for a glimpse into life at Wellesley, and it offers a selection of 1- to 4-week workshops on topics ranging from STEM to leadership.
Audrey lives about an hour outside Chicago where she attends a co-ed public high school. Wellesley College had been on Audrey’s radar since she was a freshman, and its summer program was the perfect opportunity for her to experience the college setting first-hand. She was intrigued by the all-women’s environment which is, “tailored to advancing women in a world where things aren’t always so equal,” she said.
During her first summer here, Audrey took an Abnormal Psychology course for a week without the stress of homework or tests. The following year she did a week-long Leadership Workshop where she learned business/life skills like email writing, business etiquette, how to ace an interview, and the correct way to shake hands. “I used to offer my left hand instead of my right,” she said, but now she feels a lot more confident when she meets people.
Audrey’s mentor, and seasoned business professional, shared her experiences living abroad and working at huge brand name companies. “You could tell she really cared about her students,” Audrey said. “We all bonded because of our small class size and I met people from all over the country and the world – including England, Singapore, and China.”
Audrey had attended a summer program at another college, but there she had very little free time. “At Wellesley, the RAs were always around if we needed them, but we had a lot more independence, which I loved.” Each day was a bit different, but Audrey and her classmates would meet in the morning for lectures, group discussions, collaborative activities, and mock training sessions. In the afternoons, the RAs often ran activities like a scavenger hunt, an escape room challenge and cookie decorating. The most memorable moment for Audrey was going on a Duck Boat Tour in Boston – “it’s such an amazing city filled with so much history,” she said. “My friends and I loved exploring and seeing places I had only learned about in school.”
One thing Audrey was nervous about was having a roommate. As an only child she had never shared a room or a bathroom, but at Wellesley she hit it off with her roommates right away. “I discovered I was more accepting of people who are different from me than I thought, and that we all have things to learn from each other,” she said. “Living in the dorms made it feel more like home.”
The Pre-College program was a great chance for Audrey to see if Wellesley was the right fit for her. She applied Early Decision in 2019 and will be joining us as an undergraduate this fall. “I'm so thankful for Wellesley's summer program because it allowed me to be 100% comfortable and confident in my decision. I can’t wait to come back!”
With the most powerful women’s network on the planet and a long list of inspirational alumnae including Hillary Clinton, Madeline Albright, Nora Ephron, Cokie Roberts, and Diane Sawyer, Wellesley College has laid a successful foundation for so many young lives. To get a taste of the Wellesley experience first-hand, check out our Pre-College Summer Programs.