As college decisions are being made and the grind of the middle of the semester for college students is in full effect, I often find myself sitting and reflecting on what brought me to Rutgers, or, what many would call, my "home away from home." The financials, the diversity, the five vast campuses (Livingston, Busch, College Ave, Cook, Douglas) to venture on each and every day...

What could seem wrong with all of the amazing opportunities that a school as large as Rutgers gives their students?

My decision was quickly narrowed down and eventually made with the support and love of my family, and the college journey began.

Freshman year passed in the blink of an eye and it was one of the most life-changing few months that I have ever had. Learning to depend on myself more heavily than ever before, keeping contact with those most important to me, balancing schoolwork with the craziness of getting to know other students and campuses, and taking advantage of all of the opportunities that were being presented to me seemed overwhelming at times, but helped to shape me into the person that I am today.

Most importantly, however, I was able to meet the people that I am able to call my best friends and my support system when I need it most; near or far, they are a dinner, text, FaceTime, or homework session away to hear me out, and I could not do it without them.

Sophomore year, however, things have changed, but not as positively as they may seem.

Yes, I am still being given the opportunities of a lifetime that I help shape my college career. But, I am becoming distant and distasteful of this place that was supposed to be my "home away from home." Is it the bus system? Is it the people? Is it the course load and the rigorous academics? Is it the dorm?

The questions continue to swarm my head as I find myself sulking in the stress of the homework and extracurricular endeavors that are making me feel more like a machine than a human being.

What should I do? Do I transfer now? Do I hold out? Do I try to get more involved?

Being in close proximity to home and those who I love the most has gotten me through some of the darkest hours here at Rutgers. I can't necessarily pinpoint what exactly it is that has changed my perception so heavily, but I know that I have to find a means of making me happy, both when I am on campus and when I'm afar at home.

Rutgers has given me the opportunities of a lifetime and has truly helped to shape me into the student, daughter, girlfriend, and sister that I am today, but it has also taught me that all good things might come to an end.

As I struggle to get through these last few weeks of the semester and find that light at the end of the tunnel, I urge you to find your place of happiness, even if it doesn't seem possible. Even though Rutgers was supposed to be my happy place, I know that I will always have Scarlet Pride instilled in me and a fond love and appreciation for this institution.

Once a Knight, always a Knight.