Interviewing first years: expectations vs. reality

By Saskia Ghosh

For many delegates attending CONA, the conference is a completely new experience. From the aesthetic pictures of mountains while sitting on the front porch to hiking up to Eureka Hall for the fourth time, many experiences at CONA are a first. Goals, personalities, and ideas change constantly as one grows throughout the conference.

When asking first-year delegate Sebastian Montesinos from New Mexico about how his goals for CONA changed as the conference progressed, he replied that his goal moved from writing a really outstanding proposal to meeting new people and making connections with other delegates. While his original goal was more personal, CONA morphed his goal into one of community.

Not only do goals change, but expectations of what CONA is like prove to be significantly different from reality. Quiwanaki Ramsey from the Florida delegation said that at first he expected the CONA atmosphere and proposal sharing to be strict and regulated; however, in reality, he found that CONA involved an unbelievably loving and respectful environment.

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