An Open Letter To Incoming College Freshmen

An Open Letter To Incoming College Freshmen

We are now starting another chapter of our lives.
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My fears about college are few, but they seem so big to me. I think that I can sum my fear up in about one word: unknown. I, like anyone else, feel more comfortable when I don't know what I am getting myself into. Unfortunately, no matter how much people tell me about what college is going be like, I won't really understand how college will be until I experience it for myself. I find myself thinking of things that in the scheme of things, are so small. "What will my room look like?" "Will my roommate and I get along?" "How much free time am I gonna have?" "How often will I be home?" I question myself constantly in my head about college. I'm also afraid of living away from my friends and family because they are all I have ever known. "What if I don't make any friends?" But then I remind myself, "Okay slow down, you're being ridiculous." I know that everyone has these conversations and fears in their heads. So, it is so comforting to know that none of us are alone. Yet, all of us can feel so alone and scared.

I think that the only way to go about this change is to close your eyes and jump. Take a leap of faith. We can all acknowledge our fears about going away to college, but the important thing is to not let it cripple us. Maybe even talking with people that are experiencing the same thing will help. We all must take this change head on with confidence that we are well prepared and that there is a reason that we are going wherever it is we may be going. Sure, we won't be around all of our family and friends, but home is just a drive/flight away. Will we lose some friends? Yes, but I believe that is how we know who our real friends are. Although growing up can be so bittersweet, I am choosing to focus on the positives.

We are now starting another chapter of our lives. We get to chose what we will be. If we are willing to work hard and focus, we can accomplish our dreams and we will be able to make the family and friends that we miss so much, proud.


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To The High School Teacher Who Changed My Life Long After Graduation

It is about time you knew.

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I have been putting off writing this since graduation; what do you say to someone who changed your life completely? Exactly. I had no clue either, but after thinking, writing and rewriting this all came together.

I finally knew what I wanted to say to you.

First and foremost, thank you. Throughout my high school career, you were the one person that no matter what I was feeling, thinking, or needing you understood. You are my biggest supporter and even throughout college, you continue to reach out to make sure that everything is going well.

You encourage my dreams, tell me how you really feel and never let me make the stupid choice. You listened to me as I cried and laughed with me through the good moments. You encouraged me to reach for the stars and no matter what you told me that I could. You created this idea in my mind that I could be anything I wanted, and anyone I wanted and because of you I believe that now.

Second, you are incredible.

I know you will never believe me on this but you never gave yourself enough credit anyway. You stuck with your passion for teaching even after the benefits of other jobs. You raise a family and support three kids and a wife through their biggest moments despite the time consumed at work. You manage to be a friend, a colleague, a tutor, a coach, a teacher, a husband, a father, a son, and a neighbor and never let your commitment to anyone go without attention. You spend countless hours on the people around you and never ask for anything in return. You give everyone the time of day they deserve and you make sure when they are done talking to you they feel better. I hope someday you see that you are one of the most incredible people, you deserve to.

Lastly, you make a difference.

I know after a long day of high school students you feel like you talked to a brick wall. I know you feel like what you just did was a waste of your time and theirs, but you need to know that is not true. You encourage students to pursue their dreams. You encourage people to make the right decisions despite the wrong temptations. You encourage students to be themselves and give them an environment in which they can, safely and happily. You make a difference on every student you encounter.

While writing about your students, I cannot even begin to tell you how you make a difference in your children. Your children look up to you, believe in you and listen to you. You pursuing your dream, giving them a home and loving their mother makes a difference every single day in their life. I have asked them about you, and the things they say would bring the toughest man to tears. Please know at the end of every day - you made a difference.

After everything you did for me, I will never be able to repay you.

I hope I can make you proud and I hope that no matter where my future takes me you will forever know that I am there in part because of you. You deserve the world, but a letter will have to do for now. Continue to be the incredible person you are, because the world needs more people like you.

From,

The Student Who's Life You Changed

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20 Binge-Worthy Shows To Watch If You Are Stuck In Tuscaloosa Over The Holidays

There has never been a better time to spend countless hours on your couch watching a ridiculous amount of TV.

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The holidays are normally a time that you spend with your closest friends and family in your hometown, but when you choose to go to college far away from your hometown things often do not go as smoothly as planned. Being far away from home for college can result in the inability to travel home for the holidays. Whether work is the obstacle or it is just too far to travel for such a short time, being away for the holidays is a reality for many college students. The campus will be a ghost town and then you are stuck wondering what to do without having your best friends around 24/7. Well, there is nothing wrong with spending the break snuggled up binge watching some of the best shows on Netflix. Here is a list of all types of different shows perfect for binge-watching over break!

Short, sitcom-like shows that you can watch a ridiculous number of episodes of in a day:

New Girl (7 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUKWH2ewrGY

Girl Boss (1 season)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-U2G280kmI

Parks and Recreation (7 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=na7mCH3ZRLA

Brooklyn 99 (5 seasons) *you will have to head over to Hulu for this gem

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hkydU-s0PpI

Some suspense for those who like to be on the edge of their seats:

How to Get Away With Murder (4 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hQ-DjZS3Ejo

Mindhunter (1 season)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7gZCfRD_zWE

Ozark (2 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5hAXVqrljbs

Bates Motel (5 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sjMEyNtgwvc

For the lover of crime shows:

Evil Genius (1 season)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qpdb9zo_1t8

Criminal Minds (12 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNpnZa304f8

Dexter (8 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bs7m-epIKCQ

Making a Murderer (2 parts)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxgbdYaR_KQ

Drama, love, cute boys: all the staples of a great TV show:

Gilmore Girls (7 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3UBTekGpNs

Jane the Virgin (4 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JPNVHRNCrY

Shameless (8 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ex95FSZOT04

One Tree Hill (9 seasons) *sadly you will have to head over to Hulu for this one too, but it is well worth it I promise.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-IHW3Q9Ci8Y

Honorable Mentions:

Girlfriend's Guide To Divorce (4 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mf2u5nc4gKo

The Carrie Diaries (2 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PBctXyhhRq8

Mad Men (7 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LCPawawb1Ck

Quantico (3 seasons)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ujgrgGXlrzM

No one wants to spend the holidays away from their families, but sometimes that is the way life goes. It is getting colder outside and there is now no good excuse to leave your house at all. So, use this time to enjoy your own company and catch up on some of the shows that school and social activities have kept you away from. Happy watching!

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