My first semester at UMD was filled with so many unforgettable memories that have made the transition to college much easier. Before the semester began, I was so nervous to go to school nine hours away from home. I barely knew anyone at a school that had 40,000 students. I now am comfortable at school, and I feel like it is my home away from home. I have made so many new friends at met people from all across the country, and the world who I would've never gotten the chance to meet if I had stayed closer to home.

I even met my best friend, who I now have to be apart from for 6 months. I never expected to meet someone who I would click with so quickly. Although we've been friends for only a couple months, I feel as though I've known her for years. College friends are so different than the ones you make in high school. What I've learned from my first semester is that your college friends are always there for you and always have your back because you spend as much time with them as you would with your family members. You do everything with friends at college, and I never realized how fun that would be. You have to take care of yourself in college, your parents aren't there anymore to hold your hand, but having close friends makes it so much easier. I even became best friends with someone who went to my high school and now attends UMD. I'm very lucky to have met the people I have, and I can't wait to meet even more people throughout my next semesters.

I also am really happy that I learned so much this semester. Going into college, I had thought I wanted to be a business major. I was pretty sure that I wanted to pursue marketing, but I had taken some journalism classes just to explore. I am so glad that I took them because I discovered how much I love to write, especially when given the freedom to write what I'm passionate about. I am now a declared Journalism major, and I couldn't be more excited with my decision. Although I'm not exactly sure what I want to do, I'm learning about so many options and opportunities that will be available to me as a journalism major. I feel like this semester has helped me grow and change into the person I am supposed to be, and I'm very excited about my future at UMD and what's in store.