A Special Thank You To My College Best Friends

A Special Thank You To My College Best Friends

I wonder every day how I lived without these people for 18 years, but I know they'll be in my life forever.


Like many other teenagers entering college for the first time, I was terrified. I had lived in the same town my whole life, so I was surrounded by the same people from elementary school through high school. Friendships were created and lost over that period of time, and at the end of senior year, I grew even more grateful for the friends who had stuck by me for years through thick and thin.

Although I knew going to college didn't mean our friendships would come to an end, the idea of leaving these amazing people and having to create a whole new circle of friends was horrifying.

The spring and summer before entering college, I spent a large amount of my time on various forms of social media to find other people that would be entering Stony Brook University as a freshman. I was determined to find friends so that the first few days wouldn't be awkward and lonesome. Some of the people I met online I haven't met up with or spoken to since, but to my pleasant surprise, many of them turned out to be my best friends.

Over the summer, I had met a girl named Jennifer that seemed incredibly sweet and we were in a similar situation since we were both beginning college in a relationship. As I entered my building on move-in day with bags in hand, a familiar face and friendly voice approached me. Until that moment, I hadn't known Jenn would be living in my building and that I'd have a friend close by.

That same day as I was crying in my room after my family had left to go back home, Jenn invited me up to her suite to distract me from being sad. I was hesitant because I wasn't familiar with her suitemates, but I took her up on the offer anyway. I quickly felt incredibly comfortable around all five of the girls she lives with and to this day, I'm an honorary member of their suite. Their suite is the place I go to do homework, eat some snacks, blast music with friends, and most importantly, feel at home.

Even though classes such as chemistry and math are overall miserable, they helped me find some amazing friends. I look forward to seeing my friends in our usual seats every day in class. They make the lectures a little more bearable just by sitting next to me because I know people that I love are in the same situation I'm in.

We always help each other with difficult topics and make sure that we all get our work done. They began as my friends inside the classroom, but quickly became some of my best friends overall. I love grabbing dinner with them after class or going to our building events together. We can even make studying or doing homework together so much fun.

I was very fortunate to find my roommate about six months before we even began college. Alongside many other colleges, Stony Brook provides incoming freshman with an application called the Schools App to get to know other people in the same situation and potentially meet friends. I vividly remember being on a date with my boyfriend when to my surprise, I got a direct message notification from the Schools App.

The mysterious messenger was named "Nichole," which at the moment, I thought was a typo. At first, we made small talk and I could automatically tell that she was extremely kind. We eventually got to talking about school and our majors, and I discovered that we both wanted to be orthodontists, which I had never related to anybody else on. Later, I learned that we played the same sports and had many of the same interests.

After only days of talking, she nervously asked if I would be her roommate which was a huge relief because I was too shy to ask. Thankfully, we got along equally as well, if not better, in person and she's taught me that your roommate is meant to be your built-in best friend.

Nichole, along with another one of my best friends, Sophia, and I do everything together. We do the most childish things when all three of us hang out whether it's deciding to dye our hair at a random moment or have a dance party at midnight. Sophia is basically our third roommate and doesn't even bother asking to come over anymore. No matter what, we feel as though we can be ourselves around one another and most importantly, we're always there for each other when times get tough.

Without every one of these girls in my life, I don't know if I'd be succeeding the way I am in college. They motivate me to do my best in my academics, always provide someone to confide in, help me with school work, and heal my homesickness. At the beginning of this school year, I was convinced I would never have as strong of friendships as I had in high school and that college would be a lonely place, but I thankfully found an incredible group of girls that I know will now be in my life forever.

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To The Nursing Major During The Hardest Week Of The Year

I know that no grade can possibly prove what kind of nurse you will be. I know that no assignment will showcase your compassion. I know that no amount of bad days will ever take away the empathy inside of you that makes you an exceptional nurse.


To the Nursing Major During Finals Week,

I know you're tired, I know you're stressed, and I know you feel like you can't go on. I know that no part of this seems fair, and I know you are by far the biggest critic of yourself. I know that you've thought about giving up. I know that you feel alone. I know that you wonder why in the world you chose one of the hardest college majors, especially on the days it leaves you feeling empty and broken.

But, I also know that you love nursing school. I know your eyes light up when you're with patients, and I know your heart races when you think of graduation. I know that you love the people that you're in school with, like truly, we're-all-in-this-together, family type of love. I know that you look at the older nurses with admiration, just hoping and praying that you will remain that calm and composed one day. I know that every time someone asks what your college major is that you beam with pride as you tell them it's nursing, and I know that your heart skips a beat knowing that you are making a difference.

I know that no grade can possibly prove what kind of nurse you will be. I know that no assignment will showcase your compassion. I know that a failed class doesn't mean you aren't meant to do this. I know that a 'C' on a test that you studied so. dang. hard. for does not mean that you are not intelligent. I know that no amount of bad days will ever take away the empathy inside of you that makes you an exceptional nurse.

I know that nursing school isn't fair. I know you wish it was easier. I know that some days you can't remember why it's worth it. I know you want to go out and have fun. I know that staying up until 1:00 A.M. doing paperwork, only to have to be up and at clinicals before the sun rises is not fair. I know that studying this much only to be failing the class is hard. I know you wish your friends and family understood. I know that this is difficult.

Nursing school isn't glamorous, with the white lab coat and stethoscope. Nursing school is crying, randomly and a lot. Nursing school is exhaustion. Nursing school is drinking so much coffee that you lose track. Nursing school is being so stressed that you can't eat. Nursing school is four cumulative finals jam-packed into one week that is enough to make you go insane.

But, nursing school is worth it. I know that when these assignments are turned in and finals are over, that you will find the motivation to keep going. I know that one good day of making a difference in a patient's life is worth a hundred bad days of nursing school.

Keep hanging in there, nursing majors. It'll all be worth it— this I know, for sure.

So, if you have a nursing major in your life, hug them and tell them that you're proud of them. Nursing school is tough, nursing school is scary, and nursing school is overwhelming; but a simple 'thank-you' from someone we love is all we need to keep going.


A third-year nursing student who knows

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Why Fordham Should Have a Safe Space Policy

On a campus committed to it's student's safety, why is emotional safety left out?


Last year college Republicans were asked to leave Rodrigue's coffee house for provoking members by wearing pro-Trump attire within the shop. The reason they were asked to leave was because Rodrigue's upholds a "safe space" policy, which can be boiled down to the simple phrase: "No racism. No sexism. No homophobia." In the eyes of the members and patrons of Rod's, Trump embodied all of these things. Regardless of the politics of this specific incident, the phrase and policy seems redundant because this rhetoric can't possibly be allowed anywhere else on campus. Right?

As this incident made campus as well as national news Father McShane addressed the events in an e-mail to all students in which he made it clear he did not condone the approach of the College Republicans, as well as stated that Fordham has no official Safe Space policy and insinuated if it did this would silence voices on campus.

Let's examine what a safe space policy means and why it's important to so many members of the Fordham community. It simply means homophobic, sexist, and racist imagery and speech are not allowed. On a campus with racial minority, female, and queer students who chose to be members of the Fordham community as well as study here, live here, and pay obscene amounts of money to be a student, it does not make sense for these individuals to be subjected to abuses related to their identity. How can you focus in class when your professor misgenders you, a student makes a disparaging comment about your religion, or you fear for your physical safety due to the way you present yourself? Bigoted rhetoric is oppositional to academia.

Fordham is a private university, not a public one, and could easily legislate a basic safe space guideline on campus. I understand many of us that a safe space policy would protect do not experience outward aggression often, if at all, as the University does take steps to ensure our safety. So why no official policy? The answer is simple to me: money. Fordham receives hefty donations from conservative alumni whose own political ideology is contrary to the safe space policy. The choice to not outwardly support minority students is a decidedly economic and political one, despite Father McShane's plea for political peace on campus.

And what is wrong with silencing hateful voices? Tolerance is an incredibly important value, but should tolerance really extend to the intolerant? I found the logic behind not installing the policy as it would politically oppress individuals, incredibly interesting and telling. This means your politics are fatally bigoted and I would take a critical look at that. It's intrinsic to our perception of our school to remember that colleges are businesses and it is sometimes their prerogative to meet economic needs above the needs of their student body. However, this is hopeful. As patrons of this business, we can demand more of them and the most effective way to do this is economical. Invest money in places such as Rodrigue's to expand their voice, have your parents write letters to the school, tell at-risk individuals to not apply, and encourage alumni to earmark their money for minority student initiatives or withhold it unless the school legislates a safe space policy.

We as a student body should care for one another and above all respect the personhood of everyone on and off campus. Consider honoring the policy in your own lives and social circles, and demand Fordham to officially do the same.

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