Dartmouth 11.5%, University of Pennsylvania 10%, Yale 6.3%, Stanford 5.1%. These are the acceptance rates of four very prestigious schools that have something in common: they all accepted senior Asunción Hampson-Medina for the Fall 2015 semester. Asunción “Chon” Hampson-Medina received acceptance from competitive institutions as early as last November. Among these universities were San Diego State, UC Santa Barbara, Stanford, Georgetown, Dartmouth, University of Pennsylvania, and Yale.
While Hampson-Medina had a variety of prestigious universities to attend in the fall, he ultimately committed to Stanford University after hesitation due to him not wanting to follow too close in his parents footsteps, both of which went to Stanford, with an English Literature major.
“I couldn’t stop thinking about [Stanford] and I’m comfortable there,” Hampson-Medina said.
In order to earn acceptance into one of these schools a student must have a quality that makes them stand out. Hampson-Medina had the academic box checked with a 4.3 overall GPA and a SAT score of 1970. He has his time split with his positions as varsity soccer captain, International Baccalaureate vice president, and is one of the Associated Student Body (ASB) Athletic Commissioners.
“I think being part of ASB is a great asset to every student.Iit tells the universities that the student takes pride in his school or in his community so that was very beneficial and Asunción emulates those characteristics,” ASB Advisor Christopher Alvarez said.
The ASB is just one part of Hampson-Medina’s resume, he marks his involvement with the International Baccalaureate programme (IB) as one of the most time consuming and rewarding activities on his agenda.
“IB itself is a very stressful program…you’re in this group of kids who are all in the program for the same reason, they want to have the best chance to get into your dream school. You’ll do whatever it takes and that’s nice working with hard workers and overachievers. When you put yourself against those types of people it helps you see where you stand and it humbles you.”
But extracurriculars can only do so much for Hampson-Medina without a driving force behind him, and that force is his family. His family helped him stay on track and made sure to set high expectations for him to meet.
“I think one of the fundamental things that got [Asunción] to where he is at now is the fact that he comes from a very strong and close family,” IB Coordinator Thomas Dunn said. “I think that all of the successes that he has had in school, you can trace back to his family and his parents pushing him and setting high expectations for him.”
Hampson-Medina’s family is no exception to Dunn’s way of thought, he was supported by his family through all of high school by being pushed to be successful by his family.
“I made sure that [Asunción] understood that if he wanted to go to a college like the ones that he applied to and that he was accepted a,t that he would have to have outstanding grades and test scores and work hard,” Hampson-Medina’s father Colon Cloud Hampson said.
Hampson-Medina’s family influence does not end with their encouragement, but with his Native American bloodline as well.
“[Asunción] has a cultural heritage that is part of who he is and a culture and [that adds] diversity to the colleges so put it all together you have someone who is that much better than the rest of the cloud,” Dunn said.
Success stories like this do not always have a smooth ascension from takeoff to cruising altitude, a lot of the times they reach some turbulence along the way.
“I had a really rough start my freshman and beginning of sophomore year, I mean I did okay but I didn’t stand out with my grades,” Hampson-Medina said.
With all the factors influencing him in many different directions, it took a lot of introspection to make sure that he was making decisions that truly made him happy.
“I set it all aside mentally and really thought about it, and it was still meant to be.” Hampson-Medina said.