Freshman year was full of laughter, tears, sweat ("Texas heat is Texas heat" -RG3), stress, soft smiles, and confusion. Looking back, I wouldn't trade this year for anything in the world (not even a Klondike bar). I have hundreds of people to recognize, so this letter will address almost everyone who made me feel at home in Waco.
To my welcome week group: I debated for hours whether to show up and meet you all. Yet here we are meeting up at IHOP on week nights at 1:00 a.m. and sharing our deepest thoughts and feelings with each other. People don't know how we remained so close, but I am the most fortunate person to have met and lived with each one of you.
To the friends I met randomly along the way: You are the people that became my best friends in a matter of minutes. Spontaneous trips, late night talks, and weekend adventures have really taught me how to find love and beauty in the extreme.
To the Waco community: You may not see your impact on my life, but you have helped me grow. You have taught me to be adventurous and creative.
To the homeless and poor: You have taught me to be more generous and loving.
To Baylor: You have inspired me to chase my dreams and keep all doors open. Thank you.
To my parents: My everyday phone calls about how to clean stains, fix my broken bike, or manage my finances may have seemed overwhelming, but I have learned new things every day by your wisdom. I honestly have no clue where I would be without your willingness to teach me how to grow up. I hope that someday I can be half as awesome as you two are.
To my brother: Thank you for being the older version of me. You let me learn from your college experiences (both good and bad) so I could succeed and enjoy myself to the fullest. Thank you for guiding me in which classes to take, letting me crash on your couch, borrow your car, eat your food, and steal your movies. Thank you for being my role model.
To my sister: Everything you told me about college was right. Thank you for giving me social and relational advice. Also, thank you for editing my papers, designing my portfolio cover, and being there when I needed to talk to someone. Without you, I would have chosen the worst friends and had an awful freshman year.
To all the people who drove me around: I will be forever grateful for your kindness. This seems like a minor thing, but it was greatly appreciated. As an out-of-stater, it is sometimes hard to find a ride to places, but I got to experience most of my fun experiences off campus because of all of you lovely people.
To my church family: Thank you for teaching me what true community is. I always heard that term and thought it was a cliche, but I finally understand. You all let me in and allowed to be to be vulnerable, curious, and finally excited to go to church.
To my brother's friends: I'm so happy that I'm no longer seen as "Michael's brother," but as "Scott." You all have helped me to adapt into the college life and treat me like a friend. Whether it's through a laugh or small encouragement, your actions have helped me grow this past year.
To my friends back home: I have not forgotten you. I am so thankful that we keep in touch and look forward to seeing each other every break. You are the reason I have pushed myself to be where I am, and you will always have a huge part of my heart.
I love you all and can't wait for the next three years of this journey. Sic 'em bears.