A Shout Out to All the Amazing Friends I Made in College

A Shout Out to All the Amazing Friends I Made in College

"Cash don't last, my friends will ride with me."
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One of the biggest fears I had before coming to college was whether I would ever make new friends after having been surrounded by the same group of people for seven years. I was concerned I would never form the tight relationships that I had grown used to being involved in.

Four years later, I only wish I could assuage freshman me’s mind. I find myself saying hello to an acquaintance daily on campus, and meet with my closest friends at least once a week. I have movie marathons, museum trips, and amazing opportunities lined up through this final quarter. The idea of “circles” has heavy resonance in my life, as almost all my friends know at least one other friend in some degree of connection.

Although my academic life has been fueled by my own interest, ambition, and passion, I still believe the other aspects of my college life have been substantially made better by the people I met here. If anything, the fear that consumed me before college encouraged me to leave my comfort zones and say hi to the new face that became my roommate this year. That fear contributed to my current position as a club president and fifth-grade creative writing teacher.

Here's to my UCLA family!

Shout out to my roommates!

I’ve already dedicated articles to my roommates (pictured above), but that’s because I’m so grateful that I have been able to live with these three women for the last academic year. Through all our dramatic, finals week breakdowns and our late-night, trashy movie marathons, I gained the three sisters my only-child self always wanted. You’re my ride-or-die second family and I love you so dearly.

Shout out to my incredible UCLA English department support system!

I felt welcomed by my department and the individuals that make up the department from the first day I visited on Bruin Day. After I started my classes, I made friends in every class. Not only was the department welcoming, but somehow the entire English major contingency followed suit. I met one of my best friends and roommates in my first quarter of English classes, and it was in that first month that we decided we would live together. I made friends in that class that decided to hang out even after our study sessions.

Shout out to my lit(erary) travel study crew!

Hanging out with the group of people that made up our travel study crew was what made traveling through the UK and wandering for hours through London so much sweeter. When I say that was an adventure of a lifetime, I mean I’m going to remember our late-night shawarma runs, high-tea times, and garden photoshoots forever. My heart ballooned to its greatest size when we finished our trip with a traditional Bruin 8-clap! If I get to, I’d love to travel with any one of you again.

Shout out to my dedicated organization leadership boards!

The pleasure has been all mine to work with my Writer’s Den board this last year and to participate as a member the year before. I can’t forget our inside jokes (especially the goats and white-snow ghost tigers) and will always remember how you all had my back especially during the hardest weeks of the last two years. We have accomplished the most amazing things as leadership and taught the most creative students I’ve ever come across. Thank you for all the opportunities and for the experiences that I’ll always hold onto.

Shout out to the friends of my friends who have now become my closest friends!

That seems like an unnecessarily complex title for y’all, but it is the most accurate. I would have never been so close to most of you if we had not been introduced by our mutual. And am I thankful for that introduction! Other people wouldn’t have ever guessed that we never knew each other before a couple months or years ago because of the state of our friendships. I am so glad we got to know each other and have grown much closer through the ups and downs of college life.

I’m writing here to acknowledge the different groups and individuals that have contributed to my college experience. With this shout-out, hopefully, if you’re also finding yourself with similar fears as mine, you can be reassured that you will find your people.

Cover Image Credit: Jui Sarwate

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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An Open Letter To The Friend Who Continues To Save My Life

No one knows me like you do.

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From the day we became friends, we have always had nothing but support for one another. Although we have only really been friends for about seven years now, I feel as if you have always been a part of my life. You know me just as well as you know yourself, and I understand you in the same way I understand my own thoughts and feelings.

You have never made me feel pressured, insecure, or unappreciated. The mutual respect we have for one another is unmatched. We can talk to each other about anything; from some of the most trivial topics to entire life philosophies. We have grown and matured together, and I couldn't be more proud of the person you are today.

We don't always agree on everything, and I always appreciate your fresh point of view, but I have never felt more in sync with another person than I do with you. We share the same birth month, the same age, the same home town, the same anxieties, and many of the same attitudes and values.

I feel as if you know exactly when I want to be alone and when I need company. Since we are both introverted, we understand that the other person needs time to recharge. And when I'm sitting alone with nothing to do, I always get a text from you asking to hang out.

In some of my loneliest, most vulnerable moments, you have been there. When I question how many true friends I really have, you are always sure to make your love for me known.

Through high school, and now college, we have experienced so many life-changing events together. Some that have taught us extremely valuable lessons, and others that have shown us incredible pain and how to grow from our lowest moments.

I want to thank you for showing me what life-long friendship looks like. Thank you for always understanding me and never putting too much pressure on me. I see an incredible future for both of us no matter where each of our lives takes us.

We will always share a unique connection that cannot be separated by any distance. But, for now, I'm glad you're only one text or phone call away.

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