An Ode to College
Today, I spoke with a boy visiting my university, trying to decide if he will commit to four years here in Boston starting this September.
He expressed to me his fears. He lives about ten minutes away from the city, but is contemplating moving across the country to go to school in California or staying put and attending BU. He told me he thinks he would love living in the city, and I agreed — I most certainly don’t know him, but I do know Boston. I know that’s so clichey, and it’s sappy, but trust me when I tell you that this city, this university, and the people I have been so lucky to meet, have changed my life.
In high school, I was decently well-liked. I had a bubbly demeanor and was talkative, but not too many people knew how greatly I struggled at the end of the school day. I’d go home after class feeling defeated. I didn’t have the energy to do my work to the best of my understanding and supposed ability. My grades didn’t match my wits, no matter how hard I pushed myself. Getting accepted into a university was a feat. At the age of 18, the world felt way too big and something didn’t fit.
Thankfully, a fresh start in a new city inspired me.
Fast forward to 2016. I am now 22 years old. I am employed. I am in love. I am tired, but I am happy. I am three, thirty-page papers and two weeks away from graduation. My grades still aren’t the best you’ve ever seen, but I am stronger than I was four years ago. I have pulled all-nighters and given innumerate presentations and submitted more research papers than I can count. I’ve skipped parties, but danced in study lounges at 2am. I’ve cried in the library and probably singlehandedly depleted Starbucks’ supply of Double Shots daily. But I have also skipped class, danced in bars, and cried tears of happiness. I have studied in two countries and have picked up a second language. I have made some of the most wonderful friends and have strayed from some as well. I am thankful for those who pushed me to be better. For those who helped me recognize my own will, but still supported me in times when I felt like I had none.
I am a lot of things. I am at once ready, and not at all. I am a combination of the people I’ve met and the experiences which I have been so lucky to call mine. I am exhausted. I am excited. I am proud. I am more than I could have ever imagined four years ago.
Thank you, BU and to all those who’ve helped me get here. It’s been a wild ride.
I’ll see you at commencement!