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The class of 2028: Accepted students react to acceptance

Incoming students share excitement over open curriculum, freedom

<p>Admitted students were most excited about the open curriculum and newfound freedom they will enjoy during their time at Brown. Courtesy of Topher Sah, Sola Idiaghe and Claire Cho (Left to Right)</p>

Admitted students were most excited about the open curriculum and newfound freedom they will enjoy during their time at Brown. Courtesy of Topher Sah, Sola Idiaghe and Claire Cho (Left to Right)

Following last week’s regular decision admissions release, The Herald spoke with students of Brown’s incoming class of 2028 to hear their reactions to joining the next cohort of Brunonians. 

On Dec. 1, Sola Idiaghe, who plans to pursue computer science or mechanical engineering, was sitting in his fourth period psychology class when he received the status update. He had applied for admission via Questbridge, a nonprofit that matches students from low-income backgrounds to elite universities on full-ride scholarships.

“I opened the status update without any hesitation and, to my surprise, I matched to Brown,” Idiaghe said. He began shaking from excitement and, after prompting from his teacher, shared the news of his admission and received congratulations from the entire class.

For Idiaghe, the best part of his acceptance was his mother’s reaction: “I experienced strong emotions not because I got into Brown, but because my mom was so happy for me. Getting accepted into Brown will be something I will cherish forever,” he said.


Idiaghe is most excited to take advantage of Brown’s open curriculum “to explore different branches of STEM, as I am undecided in what field I want to concentrate in.”

For Claire Cho from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Brown was a dream school. After being deferred during the early decision round, she was ultimately accepted this spring. Cho plans on studying biomedical engineering and psychology on the pre-med track.

“I visited back in August with my dad and from then on, I knew I had to become a student at Brown,” she said. “It was a long and stressful process but it all paid off in the end.”

Cho joked, saying “I wanted to buy merch but nothing too expensive just in case I didn’t get in. I also didn’t wear it — because I thought it would jinx me.”

After the disappointment of being deferred, Cho said she “reminded (herself) that Brown was the goal from the start.”

On March 28, all Ivy League colleges simultaneously released their admissions decisions. “It was the longest day of my life,” Cho said.

“I opened all my decisions in my room alone, saving Brown for last,” she said. “My mom was crying downstairs already because she knew how anxious I had been. My dad was also waiting quietly. And then the acceptance letter finally opened without the portals crashing. I ran down the stairs and my parents and I embraced.”

“We cried and celebrated, and I learned that patience is key, and no matter how cheesy it sounds, dreams can come true,” Cho said.

In her commitment photo shared with The Herald, Cho dons the shirt she bought during her August visit.

Topher Sah from Fremont, California was also admitted last Thursday. Once he arrives on College Hill, he plans to study biology or engineering, and “take full advantage of the open curriculum.” He is also “most excited to have independence from home.”


When his decision was released, he was in the car driving his brother home from school. “I was about five minutes away from home,” Sah said. “I opened my letter at a red light.” 

Sah said he was “honestly shocked. It felt unreal and I had to look at the letter multiple times.”

Associate Provost for Enrollment and Dean of Admission Logan Powell previously told The Herald that the application review process focused on “identifying students from a broad range of experiences with demonstrated academic excellence and the potential to make extraordinary contributions to the Brown community.”

Accepted students have until May 1 to indicate their intent to matriculate to the University.

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Talia LeVine

Talia LeVine is a photographer for The Herald and a University News Senior Staff Writer focusing on Admissions & Financial aid. She is a first-year from Seattle, WA studying Political Science with an emphasis on human rights.

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