Guest Blog by ELP Student Adarsh Rachmale – Dual Major Engineering/Ross – Class of 2020

My name is Adarsh, and I am 18 years old. Tomorrow, I am moving over 2,000 miles away from my home, Detroit, for the next 3 months. My emotions in moving to California have been cyclic. At first, I romanticized the idea of moving to California — great weather, technology, and Silicon Valley heritage. I imagined I’d be living in a house with a bunch of brilliant people, working hard, surfing on the weekends, and driving an electric car.

Then, reality sunk in when I started looking for housing. Scared by the exorbitantly high rent and cost of living, I faced the reality that the Bay may not be as glamorous and easy-going as it seems.

When someone I know goes to work for Apple, Facebook, or Google, I am impressed. Once I’m living in California, will these people be a dime a dozen? Are they really that special when Apple, Facebook, and Google collectively have 200,000 employees?

Now, a day before I leave, I’ve secured my housing and plans for the next 3 months, and again I am insanely excited to get my feet wet in Silicon Valley. After all, this is what I have been working so hard the past 4 years of my life to do.

Preparing for my departure to the Bay area, I did these 10 things to make my transition as smooth as possible:

  • Start a list of people and companies I want to meet and visit

To make sure I make the most out of the summer, I hopped on excel and systematically identified people I can learn from and companies I’d work for. Using the document to track progress in connecting to people, I am determined to check every box by the end of summer.

  • Map out potential alumni networks in the area     

Tapping into an alumni network is the best way to conjure a relationship from thin air. I ambitiously sorted through my high school’s entire recent alumni list and found people I plan to reach out to. Additionally, I found groups with Michigan graduates living in the Bay I hope to meet up with.

  • Talk to your soon-to-be boss

To get the best idea of what I’d be doing day-to-day. I chatted with my boss and got an understanding of what I should know going in for my first day of work.

  • Learn about cool things to do

The Bay is famous for the plethora of things you can do on any given weekend in the summer. I asked my friends who have interned in San Francisco what is cool to do–many suggested visiting Yosemite, Big Sur, and Muir Woods.

  • Spend time with my parents

I am the youngest of three in my house. As a result, for my parents, it is hard to see their baby go away for three months when I would normally be at home. I spent as much time as I could with them to be as close as I can be before leaving.

  • Plan a few weekend trips

I planned a weekend trip to Lake Tahoe with some buddies from back home. We got an Airbnb on the water!

  • Update people who matter on my move

I updated my mentors and people I’ve connected with professionally that I will be working for a tech startup in Mountain View. Knowing what I am up to should be a great way for them to feel connected. This summer, I will be implementing a lot of the advice my mentors have given me.

  • Hang out with my friends

Many of my high school friends are back home from college. Because I don’t get to see them too much throughout the year, I emphasized hanging out with them to keep our bond strong before leaving for Cali.

  • Research a new hobby to pick up

I want to learn to surf and run a half marathon. My aim is to be as productive as possible by staying healthy, while picking up interesting hobbies. I also want to be the most interesting man in the world. If there is any place in the world I can become more interesting, it is in California.

  • Develop healthy habits

Knowing I will be working long hours and not have a concrete routine, I tried my hardest to create and follow a workout and eating routine to, hopefully, uphold throughout the summer. I want to enjoy the sun by being outside and active!

I am excited for my move to San Francisco, and I am hoping it is everything I’ve dreamed it is. We hear so much about “the Valley,” but it is hard to step foot into an environment so glamorous and far away. By the end of the summer, hopefully I’ll be able to asses whether or not I like the Bay and if it lives up to the hype. For now, I am going to continue to be super amped!