A Letter To Michigan State University A Semester Before I Graduate

A Letter To Michigan State University A Semester Before I Graduate

Once a Spartan, always a Spartan.
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Dear Michigan State University,

As I watch some of my closest friends who I have met throughout my time here at MSU graduate, I found myself reflecting of the past three years I have had the privilege to call your campus home and think about the future with my one semester left here in East Lansing. We have had our highs and lows (just like the football team) but I wouldn't trade any of those moments for the world.

I came here in the Spring of 2016 as a bright-eyed and naive freshman. I planned on doing college at MSU the same way my Mom had done during her time here. I was going to be in her sorority, 4.0 every class, party all the time, have a lot of friends, and be the best Spartan to ever walk along the Red Cedar.

Needless to say, those freshman ambitions soon vanished after a month here. While I found out pretty quickly my Mom and I would not have identical college stories when it came to our time at MSU, I never once questioned if I belonged here. I

was born a Spartan! This is my dream school and when I got the "You're A Spartan" packet, it was just confirming what I already knew in my heart. Just because my experience here went differently than planned, does not mean I am disappointed by any means. In fact, I am pleasantly surprised by the turn it took.

As a new senior looking back on my time here, it's hard to believe it's almost over. Three years I have been lugging my bags back and forth to East Lansing every fall.

While I won't miss dying of heat stroke in the dorms/my apartment during the first month of the fall semester, I will miss watching all the new freshman arrive with all the hope and excitement I did when I first got here. I will miss waking up early on Saturday mornings to party with friends before a football game.

I will miss my annual Spartan T-Shirt I get with my student football tickets. I will miss trips to the Dairy Store and trying the new flavors with my best friend. I will miss sitting in the student section at Spartan Stadium (especially during the Michigan game). I will miss sitting by the Red Cedar outside of Wells Hall or under Beaumont Tower taking it all in. I will miss the craziness that is Halloween on MSU's campus. I will miss walking around campus during the first snowfall of the year. I'll miss trying out the new shops that pop up on Grand River after a stressful day of classes.

Honestly, it will be hard to say goodbye to MSU in the fall but while it might not be as often as it currently is, I will always be back. MSU taught me a lot about myself so why wouldn't I return to the place that I found myself at? After all, you are one of my homes now.

I was never popular during my time here, but I met so many cool people. I rushed but decided Greek Life wasn't for me. I wanted friends so badly that I thought the only way to make friends was being in a community like Greek Life.

I discovered this was false, and met some of my best friends by actually interacting with people in class, going to parties, joining clubs, and meeting my friend's friends. Some of these people became friends who eventually became my family.

Others, while their time was brief in my life, taught me to have fun in the moment and always put yourself out there to meet new people. Thank you for introducing me to a variety of people who I would have never met if I did not come here.

It's been a great three and a half years here, and I will miss a lot of things when I leave here in December.

Some of the things I won't miss are: missing the CATA bus, how full the library gets during finals week, the expensive Uber rates, the Starbucks line at Wells Hall, all the high schoolers who eat at Brody Caf, trecking cross campus in 5 inches of snow, driving around campus, 8am classes, almost getting run over by the international students in their fancy cars, the liberal biasness in general around campus, the Wells Hall preacher, PACE parking tickets, pulling all-nighters to write a James Madison paper, and not being able to go into the football trophy room at Skadalaris Center.

While I won't miss these things, there are plenty of things I will miss.

I love you Michigan State University. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to grow and evolve as a person as well as giving me the honor to call myself a Spartan for life. You have been the only school I have ever attended that I actually woke up every day thankful to be able to attend.

Thank you for the friends, memories, opportunities, jobs, and challenges you have presented me with as a part of being a student here. I will not take my last semester here for granted. I can't wait to be a Michigan State alumna and I can't wait to show the world what a Spartan can do.

As always, GO GREEN and GO WHITE!

Love,

A Fellow Spartan

Cover Image Credit: Alexa Warford

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Saying Goodbye To Freshman Year

"High School goes by fast, but college goes by even faster."
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“High School goes by fast, but college goes by even faster”, we’ve all heard it and probably all ignored it as well. I mean time is time. It moves at the same pace no matter what you’re doing right?

Nope.

High School is over, I’m now a freshman in college and it’s April. I’m sitting here in my dorm looking at all my clothes, and bins thinking, how in the hell will this all fit in my car again? It is crazy, I need to be thinking about all of this now because there is one month of my freshman year left, just one.

All I can keep thinking is how? Wasn’t it just last week that I moved into my cozy room at the end of the hall, or just yesterday that I ran home to two hundred beautiful new sisters? As much as it seems like yesterday, it wasn’t.

It was almost eight months ago that I stepped onto this campus as a freshman, now it is my last four weeks and they are jam-packed. From formal to finals I am in the home stretch of my first year of college. I just registered for my classes next semester, and can’t get it through my head that I will soon be a sophomore.

While walking around campus I still catch myself thinking, wow I am really here. I am a college student, at a school, I fall more in love with every day. So, how can I be a sophomore now when I feel like I just got here?

Yes, I still have three amazing years of college ahead of me, and I can’t wait to see what those years have in store in for me. But, I just can’t help but feel a little sad that I won’t be a freshman anymore. I won’t be the youngest in my sorority family, I won’t be coming back to a dorm every night.

Now don’t get me wrong, I am stoked to live in an apartment next year with my absolute best friends. And you definitely could have heard me saying “I am so over this whole dorm thing” once or twice this semester, but now I can’t help but see all the things I’ll miss.

Freshman year is just unique. You get this giant clean slate, a fresh start. And it is just waiting to see what you’ll do with it. It truly is a year of firsts. My first failure, the first time being on my own, my first time not knowing anyone in my classes. Yes, that can all be a lot to take on, I was terrified at the start of the school year. But before I knew it, I had a routine, I had friends, I had a life here.

And this life surpassed all my expectations. I have a home away from home. I have friends that I know will be my bridesmaids some day. I have experiences that I’ll never forget.

Now as I head back home for the summer I couldn’t be more excited to be with my friends there and my family. But, I also couldn’t be sadder to leave my friends here, even if it’s only for three months because they’ve become another kind of family.

Despite leaving freshman year behind, we have so many more memories to make whether it’s doing the Seminole chop in Doak, coordinating our Halloween costumes, or just chilling at the house. We’ve all come so far this year, and I can’t wait to see just how far we go. So bring it on Sophomore year, I’m ready for ya.

Cover Image Credit: Cameron Kira

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The 7 Best Pieces Of Advice I Have Been Given About Life

Some of the best advice I have been given over the years...

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There isn't a central theme among these pieces of advice or sayings. They are all just random things I have been told over the course of my life–especially in the last week. I find these 7 to be particularly helpful in various situations, and try to keep them in mind when I am in over my head.

1. "Don't be afraid to advocate for yourself because there is nobody who is going to help you more than you."

You are the #1 person who can help your own case. No one knows you as you do, therefore no one will be able to help you more than you can help yourself. A lot of things are mental, so once you can convince yourself that you deserve something (whatever it may be) you can convince anyone. Another saying goes along with this, on the flip side: "No one can diminish you but yourself." You are in control of your own self-perception, and you are very much capable of being your own worst enemy.

2. "Stand behind your reputation because you can never get it back."

My mom sent this to me the other day. Be who you are, and do it proudly. Especially with meeting people for the first time, you can never have a second chance at a first impression. That being said, if people view you in a bad light, figure out why that is and fix it. You may not be able to change someones initial thoughts of you, but you can change the way they view you after that.

3. "The best things in life happen unexpectedly."

"Life is what happens when you're busy making plans," also goes along with this. Trying to plan out every little detail of your life is only going to lead to disappointment. Sometimes you find the best things/what you're looking for when you're not actually looking. Just go through the motions and things will work out the way they are supposed to.

4. "Be proud of your accomplishments, no matter how small."

It's important to celebrate the little things. Did you go to class today? Good for you. Did you decide to drink water instead of a soda? That's awesome. How are you going to work up to doing bigger and better things if you don't have anywhere to start?

5. "Whatever you're stressing about now probably won't matter in five years."

As someone who is often eaten away by their own worry and anxiety, this is a mantra that I try to constantly remind myself. While it may seem like a big deal now, you need to keep in mind the bigger picture. Will it matter in 5 hours? 5 days? 5 months? And so on. If the answer is no to ANY of these questions, it's probably not worth beating yourself up over.

6. "Stop being the 'go to' person for someone you can't go to."

Someone tweeted that their pastor said this to them and the tweet went viral. A friend of mine sent it to me, and it really made me think. Something I have struggled with over the years is making excuses for people who don't show up for me when I am constantly there for them. This is a helpful reminder that if they aren't contributing to you and your life, you shouldn't have to bend over backward to help them out and be in their lives.

7. "Two wrongs don't make a right."

While this is often a saying that parents use on their young children, it is applicable to pretty much any stage of life. My parents, especially my dad, have constantly said this, whether it was in reference to fighting with my siblings or dealing with people at school. Even as a 20-year-old, I find myself saying this when I hear about arguments and problems people are having. Everyone wants to get even, to best those who hurt them. While it's important to stick up for yourself, it is also important to be the bigger person and not stoop to their level (and whatever else your parents told you in these situations).

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