Without A Doubt, The University of Arkansas Wesley Foundation Has Made My College Experience 15628 Times Better

Without A Doubt, The University of Arkansas Wesley Foundation Has Made My College Experience 15628 Times Better

First of all, I'd like to give a big shout out to John Wesley.

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I grew up in the church. Every week my parents took me to church, and sometimes I enjoyed it, while other times I did not. As I got older, I began to enjoy it more and wanted to go to church (especially youth group). When I left home for college, I knew I wanted to find an organization that allowed me to further grow my faith during school. This searching and desire in my heart led me to the University of Arkansas Wesley Foundation. Allow me to tell you about it, and why I am so thankful I found it.

Free food.

Alright, if I'm being completely honest, one of the greatest draws to the Wesley Foundation is the meals they provide for FREE to the students on campus. These aren't your typical cheap pizza and cokes kind of meals. These are homecooked and delicious, and the food type varies each week. One week we'll have pasta, then chicken tenders, and then enchiladas. After these dinners, we also get free dessert, which is really yummy. If there are leftovers, those will even go in the fridge for you to eat later that week as you desire. So, if you like free (delicious) food on a weekly basis, the Wesley Foundation is your one-stop shop.

The friendships.

The people I have met through the Wesley Foundation are some of the best people I know. They are people who will always have your back, no matter what. Not everyone at the Wesley is going to be your best friend. That just will never happen in any organization, even if you really want it to. But I truly believe that everyone at the Wesley cares about me and will pray for anyone when they need it. They'll help you study, write an essay, or do whatever you need done. There will probably be someone there who can help you at all times. The people you meet will counsel you, cry with you, and just plain love you throughout your years in school.


The opportunities to serve others.

Every winter break and spring break, there is an opportunity to go somewhere and serve those in need during a mission trip. This mission trip can differ in what is being done, but it usually has something to do with working on houses that need to be fixed. In the past, we have gone to Memphis, Baton Rouge, and this winter we are probably going to go somewhere in the Houston area to do Hurricane Harvey relief. While the locations are fun, and the social aspect of the long car rides and living together for a week are definitely memorable, ultimately it is the appreciation and smiles we receive from those we're serving that make these trips well worth it. The Wesley Foundation has been so influential in my college career. I can't imagine how different my life would be if I hadn't found this amazing place. If anyone out there is reading this that doesn't have a place they feel at home in college, I highly encourage you to check out your local Wesley Foundation (or something like it). You might just end up having an incredible experience like mine has been so far.

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A Letter To My Freshman Dorm Room As I Pack Up My Things

Somehow a 15' x 12' room became a home.

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Dear Geary 411,

With your creaky beds, concrete walls, and mismatched tile floors, you are easily overlooked as just another room we were randomly assigned to— but you were different. Inside your old walls, I have made some of the best memories of my life that I will hold on to forever.

Thank you for welcoming my neighbors in with open arms who quickly became friends who didn't knock and walked in like you were their own.

I feel like an apology is needed.

We're sorry for blaring the music so loud while getting ready and acting like we can actually sing when, in reality, we know we can't. Sorry for the dance parties that got a bit out of control and ended with us standing on the desks. Sorry for the cases of the late-night giggles that came out of nowhere and just would not go away. Sorry for the homesick cries and the "I failed my test" cries and the "I'm dropping out" cries. We're sorry for hating you at first. All we saw was a tiny and insanely hot room, we had no idea what you would bring to us.

Thank you for providing me with memories of my first college friends and college experiences.

As I stand at the door looking at the bare room that I first walked into nine months ago I see so much more than just a room. I see lots and lots of dinners being eaten at the desks filled with stories of our days. I see three girls sitting on the floor laughing at God knows what. I see late night ice cream runs and dance battles. I see long nights of homework and much-needed naps. Most importantly, I look at the bed and see a girl who sat and watched her parents leave in August and was absolutely terrified, and as I lock you up for the last time today, I am so proud of who that terrified girl is now and how much she has grown.

Thank you for being a space where I could grow, where I was tested physically, mentally and emotionally and for being my home for a year.

Sincerely,

A girl who is sad to go

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What I Wish I Knew About Life After High School Before I Had To Live It

Life after high school isn't always what you expected it to be.

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So you're about to graduate high school and you think you have it all figured out. You and your best friends are going to stay close throughout college and you're going to take those long road trips in college to see each other. Think again.

Life after high school isn't always what you want it to be. You think you'll miss high school, you'll always be close with your high school besties, and you'll have all this free time in college. That's just not entirely true. I personally do not miss high school. I don't really talk to anyone I went to high school with on a regular basis, and I'm totally OK with that. I have friends in college that I believe will be my lifelong friends whereas my friends in high school didn't make an effort to keep in contact with me after high school.

I haven't had all the free time I've dreamed of in college, because I'm busy with school and meetings. When I'm not doing homework, I'm making sure the rest of my life is in order and all my stuff for school is in line. I'm not the crazy party girl that people think I am because of where I go to school. I'd rather sit in bed and watch Netflix than go out with my friends. I'm not a 4.0 student, but I work so hard in my classes just to make sure that I'm passing. I study a week before tests and still don't always make A's. And that's OK. It's not what I expected during my college years, but it's what's happening, and most of my friends are the same way.

Anne Marie Bonadio

Just know that life in college isn't all easy, breezy, and beautiful like Covergirl. It's hard and you will struggle whether it be in school or with your friends. College isn't always complete freedom. You'll be tied down with school and life and you won't have the free time that you always imagined. You won't always be best friends with your high school friends. You won't be taking those road trips because you won't be able to afford them, and if you're like me, your parents won't let you.

College won't be exactly what you dreamed it'll be, but it'll be some of the best years of your life.

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