Daisy Cornejo – 2019 Live Más Scholarship Recipient, University of Southern California, Film

After months of working on grueling college applications, Daisy anxiously opened her admission decision emails. One after another, the letters informed her that she was not being offered a spot in their film school programs.

Daisy was crushed. “I thought it was the end of the road. I figured I would never go to film school. It wasn’t until I started at community college that I even realized transferring into a four-year program was a possibility.”

Shortly after, Daisy began her first semester at Santa Monica College. “Initially I felt bad that I didn’t go to a four-year school right after high school. People have this idea that students who attend community college don’t know what they are doing with their lives, but I found out that is not the case. Spending a year at SMC further helped me decide what I wanted to with my career and propelled me down the path to get there.”

After taking classes in Chicano Studies and hearing stories from Latinx authors, Daisy was inspired.  “For the first time in my life, I heard stories from people I could identify with. This ignited a passion in me to share the experiences of underrepresented groups through film. Taking these courses solidified my desire to pursue Film and Media Studies at the University of Southern California.”

A few months later, Daisy again applied to film school. She was nervous but felt confident knowing the time at SMC had prepared her for this next step. “When I found out I was admitted, I couldn’t stop crying. I felt very proud of myself for working so hard to get to this point. I was even happier knowing I had received the Live Más Scholarship. Without it, I wouldn’t have been able to afford to transfer.”

Here are Daisy’s tips for transferring:

  1. Focus on your own path. Don’t compare your experience to anyone else’s. There is no right way to go about getting a degree. Do what is best for you.
  2. Find out transfer requirements early. Communicate with the university you are interested in attending and ensure you are spending your time at your two-year school as intentionally as possible.
  3. Get involved on campus and find support. My family and I weren’t familiar with how college worked, so joining a group of first-generation Latinx students helped me navigate my way through the transfer process and college in general.
  4. Seek out resources. Reach out to your professors. Mine were all happy to help with my personal statement, write letters of recommendation, and advise me throughout the transfer process.
  5. Be patient. Waiting to receive your admission decision takes a long time, but don’t give up hope!

Currently Daisy is studying at USC and loving it. “Transferring can be overwhelming but is absolutely worth it. Being a part of this community is very special and every day I feel grateful to be here.”

Are concerns over tuition prices preventing you from transferring to a four-year university? With the Live Más Scholarship, students can use their scholarship funds to attend accredited vocational schools, two-year colleges, four-year universities or graduate school programs! Click here for more information and to apply for a Live Más Scholarship.