I often get the question: “What’s it like being a Torrey Honors student?” My answer is always, “crazily amazing.” The Torrey Honors programs has already given me so many eye-opening experiences. You get to read epics, novels, poetry and essays, and join the conversation of Western civilization with Aristotle, Dante, Virgil and so many more!

The best part about Torrey, in my opinion, are the relationships you build with your community. Incoming Torrey students are placed into a specific “house,” depending on their major. Since I am a Cinema and Media Arts Major, I was placed into Johnson House. What this means is that each semester I take an eight unit class of Torrey. For students that major in Nursing or Engineering, they are typically placed into Morgan House. This means that for the first two years of Torrey, they take 12 units a semester (aside from the first semester) because their major course load is heavier the last two years of their college career. For their last two years, they only take four units of Torrey each semester.

After being placed into a house, you are then placed into a cohort, which is the best! Your cohort consists of fourteen to sixteen students who stick together for the first two years. Each discussion (or class session) is spent with the same people. The books and tutors (professors) change, but the cohort stays the same!

I was placed into the beautiful cohort of Austen, named after Jane Austen! We are a group of sixteen well-rounded people from many different backgrounds and holding a range of opinions. It provides for diverse, challenging and enlightening conversations! I seriously never thought that I would get as close as I have to these people, but we are like family now.

Torrientation worship at the reflection pool!

I remember Torrientation (orientation for Torrey) and meeting my cohort for the first time. We were all bright-eyed and not prepared for the rollercoaster we were boarding called college.

My cohort in all our wonder!

The best part about my cohort is that four of us are film majors, so all last semester, we helped each other with projects and continue to do so now! I even made a short film with them. I have the privilege of calling these individuals my best friends. We have some music majors, film majors, intercultural studies majors, human biology majors, a computer science major, an art major, a journalism major, a chemistry major, and plenty more. It’s so fun bringing different views from all these people into one living, breathing cohort.

We always get dinner after our sessions together and catch up. Each cohort has a different dynamic, and I would say the Austen cohort of 2021 is incredibly hilarious. We can’t go a session without endless laughter. It’s a blessing and a distraction, but we do the best we can :)

I plan on staying friends with these wonderful people for the rest of my life. While I was struggling to transition during my first semester, my wonderful cohort members provided a place to freely discuss how I was feeling. Torrey gave me a community that I might take for granted too often, yet I realize it is a blessing from God.

Until next time,

Blogger Holly Changsta