Trying to articulate how I feel about the end of my college experience is challenging – particularly during this unprecedented and nerve-wracking time. I’ve had a lot of time to reflect.
I did not arrive at BU as a freshman; rather, after taking a gap year, I arrived as junior transfer student unsure of what to major in (i.e. feeling like a freshman all over again). The more years that pass from my time at my previous college, the more I’m tempted to look at it through rose-colored glasses. It’s important to note that I was unhappy there, however. After two years, I felt that I was floating aimlessly while simultaneously not feeling challenged. Despite my stagnation, I was terrified to break from it. When I finally had the courage to deviate from my mental confines, I experienced immediate relief – I went home happy to have a break from school and some much-needed time to reflect on what I wanted.
Turns out my time to think would progressively devolve into existential dread – often after 9 pm. I would scold myself for leaving behind something “good,” being a year behind my friends, and above all coming to the realization that I wanted to transfer. What if no other school accepted me?
I guess I eventually got tired of my exponential devolvement into nightly “what ifs.” I made a promise to myself that I would be productive. I was a freelance writer for my high school’s alumni magazine, was an event planner for a local artist, and babysat nearly every day to save money for the quintessential “I need clarity so I’m going to plan a trip to Europe phase.” Before I went to Europe to visit friends who were conveniently abroad at the time and who I could stay with (the only way I could afford this), I realized that I was doing a lot of writing, interviewing, and talking to journalists during my odd jobs – all things I derived a lot of enjoyment out of. So, I cracked open the Common App, something I had vowed to never do again, and applied to communication programs.
When I returned back from my amazing trip, I was anxious to see if I would be going back to the school I had outgrown. I was thrilled to see this wouldn’t be the case. I took time to visit the schools I was accepted to. I distinctly remember the day I visited BU. It was a cooler day in the spring but really sunny. I went on the campus tour and then afterward decided to pop into COM to take a look. My Dad and I were almost immediately greeted by a friendly man who walked out of his classroom, inviting us in. I was a bit too shy and above all surprised, so I said thank you and declined. I’m so glad that this was not my first and last experience with Eddie Downes. Eddie was my Non-profit PR professor and is a mentor to me. Recently, he wrote me a letter of recommendation that made me cry (in a good way).
I don’t care how cheesy, to me COM is community. I was intimidated coming in as a junior transfer, fearing I would be behind. I can say with confidence I have never felt so supported by faculty, staff, and fellow students alike. People in COM want the best for you. You’ll never be spoon-fed, but you’ll always be encouraged and guided with expertise and sincerity.
There are so many people I need to thank. All of whom I will when I set foot on campus again for Commencement. For now, I say thank you from afar. My past two years at BU have been some of my most formative thanks to the people I have met along the way. I’m sad the Class of 2020’s time was cut short, but I’m incredibly grateful for the memories I did create. Love you COM. Thanks again.