Temple University Was Not My First Choice, But It Was The Best Choice I Ever Made

Temple University Was Not My First Choice, But It Was The Best Choice I Ever Made

I had my sights set on NYU, but when I got rejected, I knew exactly where to go next.

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When I was in middle school, I decided that New York City was where I belonged. At the time, I wanted to be a criminal psychologist and get a P.h.D. I started looking into colleges in New York and decided New York University was the one. Even with its daunting 12% acceptance rate, I was ready for the challenge. I am an over-achiever, of course.

Well, to say the least, high school did not go as planned. A lot happened in my life that diverted my attention away from my grades and to more important life things, like my family and my mental health. By the time 11th grade rolled around, I questioned whether I wanted to center my life around work like I knew I would have to if I wanted to be the FBI agent I always dreamed of being.

Through all this questioning, I still thought I was going to NYU, even if it wasn't for criminal justice.

Through my quest for a college safety net, I toured Temple and immediately my perception of the school changed. I didn't want to go there for a whole list of reasons: everyone from my high school went there, it wasn't in the best neighborhood, it was too close to home and I wanted to get away. I just decided to give it a look because I was running out of options.

All of this didn't matter, though, when I saw what my life could be like at Temple. I visited on the first day of the 2016 fall semester and the campus was alive with activity. As we walked around, I loved the campus itself and the energy the people around me exuded. I could already tell that Temple could be a potential home.

Long story short, NYU rejected me and I plunged into self-doubt, pity, and disappointment. I felt like I failed before I even got to college. I was that loser that got rejected from their first choice and had to settle for the second option. Woe was truly me.

Flash forward, I am now a student at Temple and let me tell you, it was the best decision I could have ever made for myself.

Philadelphia is no New York, but that's why I love it. It has its own nuances that makes it unique. We have the historical foundations of this country at our fingertips, as well as a hub of art, music, interesting people, and so much more. Being at Temple gives me so much access to everything this city has to offer for students and I am so grateful for that.

Temple has also introduced me to tons of people, and I barely see the people I went to high school with! I was so worried about not being able to branch out and being stuck with everyone I grew up with but I was failing to recognize how many other people go here. Every day I see a new face and feel the unlimited opportunity to get to know someone new.

I have only been here for a little over a month, but Temple is like a home away from home to me. I like being close enough to my family that its only a five dollar train ride to get to them, but I feel independent at the same time.

Temple University poses endless opportunities and, even though its not NYU, I feel like I can really achieve what I was meant to achieve here, all while having fun, making friends, and figuring out who I am.

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10 Things Someone Who Grew Up In A Private School Knows

The 10 things that every private school-goer knows all too well.

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1. Uniforms

Plaid. The one thing that every private school-goer knows all too well. It was made into jumpers, skirts, shorts, scouts, hair ties, basically anything you could imagine, the school plaid was made into. You had many different options on what to wear on a normal day, but you always dreaded dress uniform day because of skirts and ballet flats. But it made waking up late for school a whole lot easier.

2. New people were a big deal

New people weren't a big thing. Maybe one or two a year to a grade, but after freshman year no one new really showed up, making the new kid a big deal.

3. You've been to school with most of your class since Kindergarten


Most of your graduating class has been together since Kindergarten, maybe even preschool, if your school has it. They've become part of your family, and you can honestly say you've grown up with your best friends.

4. You've had the same teachers over and over

Having the same teacher two or three years in a row isn't a real surprise. They know what you are capable of and push you to do your best.

5. Everyone knows everybody. Especially everyone's business.

Your graduating class doesn't exceed 150. You know everyone in your grade and most likely everyone in the high school. Because of this, gossip spreads like wildfire. So everyone knows what's going on 10 minutes after it happens.

6. Your hair color was a big deal

If it's not a natural hair color, then forget about it. No dyeing your hair hot pink or blue or you could expect a phone call to your parents saying you have to get rid of it ASAP.

7. Your school isn't like "Gossip Girl"

There is no eating off campus for lunch or casually using your cell phone in class. Teachers are more strict and you can't skip class or just walk right off of campus.

8. Sports are a big deal

Your school is the best of the best at most sports. The teams normally go to the state championships. The rest of the school that doesn't play sports attends the games to cheer on the teams.

9. Boys had to be clean-shaven, and hair had to be cut

If you came to school and your hair was not cut or your beard was not shaved, you were written up and made to go in the bathroom and shave or have the head of discipline cut your hair. Basically, if you know you're getting written up for hair, it's best just to check out and go get a hair cut.

10. Free dress days were like a fashion show

Wearing a school uniform every day can really drive you mad. That free dress day once a month is what you lived for. It was basically a fashion show for everyone, except for those upperclassmen who were over everything and just wore sweat pants.

Cover Image Credit: Authors Photos

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The First Black Student at USF: Ernest Boger

The black history of our university paves the path for future students of color

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February is Black History month, which spurred me to research into some of the Black History of my own university. There has been many inspirational students of color at the University of South Florida, and all began with one great man. In 1961, University of South Florida accepted their first black student to the university, Ernest Boger. Like many, Boger worked hard for his eventual acceptance to USF. He graduated valedictorian of his high school class and obtained an almost perfect score on his college entrance exam.

While at USF, Ernest Boger continued to be a great academic, as well as highly involved throughout USF activities, especially in the band. One thing that made me very proud to be a USF student is Boger's comments on his transition to USF. Though he did say it was difficult feeling like an outsider in comparison to everyone else, he felt accepted by many at college. However, the same could not be said about the community. For instance, Boger reflects on a time where his band mates and him went to a local restaurant, but the manager refused to serve Boger. As a reflection of true Bull culture, Boger's band mates along with other USF student protested the restaurant for days, until they were attacked as a result. I am so proud to be at a university that supports people of color, and immediately supported the only African American student at the university when he was confronted with outright discrimination.

Despite the discrimination and racism he faced, Boger continued his education at USF, graduating with a bachelor's degree in psychology. And then went on to get a doctorate! Reading about Ernest Boger makes me proud to continue his legacy as a African American student at USF. Especially in the presence of a racially charged society that still presents many limitations for African Americans in the work force, despite the education they worked hard to acquire.

Ernest Boger did not let discrimination halt his success, and neither will we.

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