Elliot Wang

People can change a lot in five years.

When I first came to RHP, I wanted to give up because it was so challenging for me. I was at an unfamiliar school speaking an unfamiliar language. I didn’t know what a binder was; I didn’t know when I had to be in a classroom; I didn’t even know why I came to this school. If you caught me on campus, most of the time I didn’t know what was going on.

I remember on the first day of my 8th grade science class. Coach Cloer passed out paper to let us take notes. I didn’t know what the paper was for and I was too shy to ask questions. At the end of the class, when everyone finished taking notes, I went up and asked what the paper was for. Coach Cloer smiled at me and said, “I’ll talk to your advisor.” At that moment, I felt embarrassed and I knew my life was going to be hard for at least two years.

Things did not go as badly as I thought they would. After a while I began to fit into the community and I found out that there are a lot of kind teachers. When my teacher reported that I was not organized, there was Dr. Bonnici helping me go through my binders to make sure there wasn't just a bunch of paper in my backpack. When I had trouble understanding Beowulf, there was Mr. Williamson reading through the chapter with me. When I was upset, there was Ms. P.D. and Ms. Hagee giving me hugs.

And it’s been almost five years. I have grown up from a kid who lost his glasses twice a week on average, who didn’t know how to use a binder, who couldn't understand Beowulf, to a student who takes care of his glasses, who organizes every night, who can read an English book without translating too much, and who enjoys life in this community.

However, just when I finished changing myself, now it’s almost time that I have to leave. It seems like yesterday that I went to a class without my backpack. But two hundred days from now I will be starting a new journey toward college and will be saying goodbye to my friends and teachers.
Maybe a year from now, I will be in my dorm room, dealing with homework and loneliness. The students and teachers in RHP will no longer be at my side, but the spirit of RHP will be in my heart. That spirit is along the way, you can cry, but you can’t turn back.

Thank you!

Rolling Hills Preparatory School

One Rolling Hills Prep Way
1500 Palos Verdes Drive North
San Pedro, CA 90732

T: (310) 791-1101 | F: (323) 310-9973 
Rolling Hills Prep School prides itself on being a forward-looking, academically rigorous college-prep school with a soul. Every day we provide our diverse student body a high-powered traditional curriculum combined with stimulating and innovative teaching techniques both inside and outside the classroom because we believe that success in college and life is best attained by equipping our students with disciplined minds, sound character, healthy bodies and creative spirits. RHP is a private, coeducational day school for grades 6-12, located on the Palos Verdes Peninsula in Los Angeles, CA.

Renaissance, our sister school, believes that bright students who learn differently can rise to great heights when they become empowered and confident. Visit the Renaissance website.