Meet Itzel Luna, The Mexican American Student Accepted to 5 Ivy League Universities

Lead Photo: Courtesy of The Pearl Post
Courtesy of The Pearl Post
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If you’ve been accepted to Stanford University and it’s the least difficult of the universities to gain admission from the list of schools you’ve applied to, you’re probably doing something right.

That’s the situation that Itzel Luna, a senior at Daniel Pearlman Magnet High School in Lake Balboa, California, northwest of Los Angeles, finds herself in today. She has been accepted not only to a highly regarded university like Stanford, but also to five Ivy League schools–Harvard, Brown, Princeton, Columbia and the University of Pennsylvania.

Luna, whose family is from Mexico, found out she was accepted to all five Ivy Leagues on “Ivy Day,” the day all Ivy League schools release their acceptance letters to incoming freshmen. Ivy Day this year was on April 6.

“I clicked on [the Harvard email] and it said congratulations, and I was absolutely shocked,” Luna told TV station KCAL 9 in L.A. “All I could do was keep checking. I couldn’t process it.”

Once she got through all five letters, she realized she was going to have a difficult decision to make. She tells KCAL-TV that she has “no idea” which school she is going to choose. Talk about a great problem to have.

What Luna does know is that she will be a first-generation college student going to one of the best universities in the country. She also knows she wants to major in communications and political science. She took journalism classes all four years of high school.

“She’s been working hard for it since the ninth grade,” Luna’s journalism teacher Adriana Chavira told the station. “She’s very determined [and] persistent.”

Luna says she has had to adapt to learning online all year because of the pandemic. It’s been stressful, but the hard work seems to have paid off.