Student Contributors - Fastweb


Fastweb's Student Contributors series allows you to gain insight on important student topics as your peers experience student life throughout the academic year.

Discover, learn from and relate to articles written by students of all ages which share first-hand encounters with vital student endeavors, such as scholarship search and college admissions processes, which matter most to you.

Get to know each of this year's student contributors below!
Emma Lynch

Emma Lynch, College Freshman

Emma Lynch is a college freshman at Appalachian State University. She's pursuing a bachelor's degree with a double concentration in literary studies and creative writing with minors in German and marketing. She is interested in working in the publishing industry and would like to be published herself. Her favorite genre to write in is magical realism, and she enjoys incorporating historical details into her stories. In her spare time, Emma enjoys photography and hiking and she's looking forward to being surrounded by the beauty of the mountains.


Preparing My College Move
Adjusting to Campus Life
7 Tips for Making Friends in College
Commuting to College
What a Typical College Day Looks Like
Choosing Your Major
Summer Jobs: Interviewing & Making the Right Impression
On Roommates
Reflections on My First Year in College

Nicole Manges

Nicole Manges, College Senior

Nicole Manges, an Ohio native, is a senior at Huntington University in Indiana, where she studies English writing and English literature. When words on the page make her go cross-eyed, she switches to music notes and practices violin or conducting techniques for her minor in music. On the weekends, she and her friends enjoy figuring out who they would be in their favorite movies and television shows.

Since the end of her freshman year in college, Nicole has served as a student assistant to Huntington University's campus visit coordinator in the Admissions Office. This usually part-time job turned into a full-time summer job in the break before her senior year, and the added time in the office only reinforced what Nicole was starting to understand: Helping college students figure out who they are and what they want to do in life is her desired career path.

Now, to find a job to fit that desire, all the while maintaining a passion for language, grammar, and syntax.

Until a career or grad school appears, Nicole is enjoying all the opportunities life in Huntington has to offer, from theatre performances to literary magazines to academic conferences.


The Art of Class Schedules
5 Things the Admissions Office Wants You to Know About the College Decision Process
Transferring Tips & To-Do's
Your Recipe for Job Search Success
Gap Year(s): Take or Avoid?
4 Things I Wish I Had Known Before My Internship Search
Making the Most of the End of College
An Open Letter to My High School Self

Kaylen Phillips

Kaylen Phillips, High School Senior

Kaylen (they/them pronouns) is a senior at Mill Creek High School and a dual enrollment student at Georgia Gwinnett College. They are passionate about writing, politics, social issues, and fandoms. As a member and advocate of the LGBTQ+ community, Kaylen is part of their local GLSEN SHINE student-leader chapter, as well as their high school GSA. They hope writing for will provide both insight and hands-on experience to pursue a career in non-profit work, advocacy, and/or publishing.

Kaylen is co-president of their high school's poetry club, and their main writing project includes scripting a sci-fi table-top adventure game with a friend.


How to Achieve a Perfect SAT Score (And Why It Even Matters)
Early Action/Decision Motivation: A Cure for College Application Procrastination?
Financial Aid They Forget to Mention: CSS Profile
Alternative Schooling Options
13 Lessons Learned by Going to College as a High School Senior
6 Tips for Getting the Classes You Want
Organizing Scholarship Applications
Talking to Your Parents about Paying for College

Cherish Recera

Cherish Recera, College Freshman

Cherish is a freshman at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She's an English major, but she intends to add the Integrative Biology major since she's interested in a public health career.

Cherish greatly values the power of communication. She believes that meaningful writing can make an effective impact, and she wishes to improve her skills in order to educate and assist people who need guidance.

Apart from her studies, Cherish enjoys exploring the world. She visited Spain and Portugal with fellow classmates during her spring break, which definitely honed her Spanish-speaking skills! She also spent a month in the Philippines to spend time with family before heading off to college. Surprisingly, she's more fluent in Spanish than she is in Tagalog.

She is passionate about theatre and debate, but she always makes time for coffee, music, friends, and as much sleep as she can get. She's also a self-proclaimed foodie who loves eating just about everything (except for bitter melon and olives).


10 Essentials for Move-In Day
How I Survived a Week with 30,000 People
No Need to Go Greek for a Good Time
Holiday Break Recovery
My Top 3 Collegiate First Semester Realizations
It Doesn't All Stem from STEM: A Case for Humanities Majors
12-Hour Rush: A Peek into College Life
My Experience with Random Roommate Assignment
The End of the Beginning: Advice from a College Freshman

Stella Santa Ana

Stella Santa Ana, High School Senior

Stella Santa Ana is a senior at Hillcrest High School. She finds joy in writing anything from stories to poems to notes to essays. Aside from writing, her free time is spent playing the piano, listening to music, running and lounging around with her dog. She is also a proud Trekkie, Studio Ghibli fan, and Yan Yan addict.

At school, Stella is an International Baccalaureate Diploma Candidate and takes Advanced Placement and honors classes, and is a member of National Honor Society, Health Occupation Students of America, and the music outreach club.

In the future, Stella plans on going to medical school to become a doctor. She wants to live a life where she is able to help and give back to people, all while writing some epic novels on the side of course! She believes anyone can live their best life by doing what they love.


How College Visits Make Your College Decisions Easier
Balancing Academics & Your College Search
Why Extracurriculars are Important
How to Best Organize Your Scholarship Search
Combating Senioritis
Writing a Great College Essay
Waiting to Hear about College Decisions
3 Simple College Prep Tips
My High School Reflections

Ryan Smith

Ryan Smith, High School Junior

Ryan is a junior at Cuthbertson High School in North Carolina. Originally from New Jersey, Ryan is an aspiring sports journalist. During his time in school, he is taking classes to help him fulfill this career goal. At school, Ryan is involved with the Beta Club. He takes time to volunteer at a local shelter which allows him to help others in getting the resources they need.

When Ryan isn't busy, he passes the time by spending it with his friends and family. He is an avid sports fan who enjoys watching sporting events. He wants to take up sports journalism due to his enthusiasm about the topic. Ryan is very happy to be gaining some experience to help him on his path.


Preparing for Your ACT & SAT Exams
Planning for a College Fair
Working Towards Better Test Scores
Why AP Courses Are So Important
Finding the Right Scholarships
Top 5 Tips to Stay Motivated for 2nd Semester
Discovering the Benefits of Extracurricular Activities
Important Aspects of College Applications