What’s Huang? Ask Amy!

In this edition of Ask Amy, the egg came first.

Amy Chin Siu Huang, Writer

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Who do you think is the most well-rounded student at school?

A well-rounded student is someone that can balance both schoolwork with extracurriculars while still maintaining a healthy social life and relationships. This person is sitting next to me.

I really want to go to a college outside of the valley but my parents are not allowing me to leave. They say it is too many expenses. Do you have any advice on how to convince them to let me go?

If money is the only issue, I can see how your parents are concerned. Student debt isn’t “no big deal.” You don’t want to start your adult career on a bad foot.

Side note: general advice I’ve heard is to calculate how much you will have to pay (after scholarships) for each year and multiply that by 4. If that number exceeds how much you’ll likely make at your starting job, then I would advise against it. For example, UT Austin costs around $25,000 per year. Say you receive $10,000 in scholarships so you have to pay $15,000 per year, which will amount to $60,000 over the 4 years. This amount will be okay if you expect to make over $60,000 in the first year of your job (e.g. if you plan to become an engineer. Engineers make around $70,000 entry level, give or take).

You should keep finances in mind if you are planning to go to graduate, medical, or law school—especially medical or law. Usually for medicine, undergraduate prestige doesn’t matter—just your GPA, MCAT score, and maybe extracurricular involvement/research, so don’t go to the “bigger name school” for the name if it’ll put you in deeper debt than going somewhere nearby like UTRGV which would cost less. Medical school is expensive and you don’t want to make things harder for yourself, especially if you take out unsubsidized loans.

Take out subsidized loans—they won’t multiply with interest.

But to answer your question, you should prove to them that you can afford whatever college out of the valley you choose. Apply for scholarships. Right now, the PSJA Education Foundation one is still open and the PSJA Local Scholarships one. And if you can’t, prove that it won’t be a big deal after graduation because your salary will allow you to easily pay it back.

What came first, the chicken or the egg, and why?

Obviously, the egg.

The theory of evolution can back me up on this. Chickens used to be something else; we’ll call this Chicken Ancestor. So, Chicken Ancestor had an egg and during the formation of the gametes, there were some mutations or crossing over or other biological processes that produce unique and different characteristics; these differences manifest in the egg. And that egg grows up to produce eggs that have the same thing happen. This repeats until eventually chickens are produced: a new species. The reason why these new mutations survived is because these new characteristics likely allowed the new chicken to have an advantage in its habitat or environment.