When I was a mere high school senior on the brink of applying to colleges, I did what all eager students did in search of a college after graduation: extensive research. My mistake, however, was not dreaming big in terms of my future university.
Don't get me wrong, I thought about the big dream schools everyone thinks about, for like a second. I dreamed of walking to class with a view of a busy New York City street as the energy of the people motivated me through my four years of college. However, in my realistic mind, I never thought I could actually get into universities like NYU, let alone any of the Ivy Leagues.
So, I only applied to schools I thought I could get into. And only schools in Texas.
When I arrived at Baylor, I was so excited about all the new experiences and memories I was going to make. I loved my classes, the professors, and learning all these different things, but Baylor didn't feel like home. I didn't know if it was the people, the small city of Waco, or Baylor itself. Despite my sensible mind, I still dreamed of going to a school as big as I wanted my future to be.
I discovered many reasons why I didn't fall in love with my school right away. I didn't find that "friend group" that everyone seemed to have. I hated (and still do) the small city of Waco. I couldn't find any opportunities to grow in my major. I was especially scared when professors in my journalism classes talked about how former students went on to work for local news stations or newspapers.
When I look up all the companies I could ever dream working for on LinkedIn (yes, I am a Girl Boss with a stellar LinkedIn), I see their employees, with a majority of them graduating from all the big name schools across the nation. NYU. UCLA. Brown. Harvard. Columbia. I feel even more disheartened about my future when my mind starts spiraling as I think that I will never get to where I want to be based on where I attend college. It's a toxic way of thinking I know, but I can't help it at times.
When I dream, I dream big. I don't want to settle for anything less than my goals.
I see myself writing and doing photography for a big-time magazine like Vogue or Elle. I see myself designing and marketing for companies all over the country. I see myself traveling the world and telling stories about different places and different cultures and different people.
I am the kind of person that won't negotiate when it comes to my happiness. So when I came to Baylor and I saw that being compromised, I thought about transferring schools for real.
But that doesn't mean I don't love my school. Baylor has become my home, especially during my sophomore year. I have found people who are not only friends, but they are family. I have found so many opportunities to grow in my skills and in my passion for writing. I love my campus, my professors, my job, and I am proud to be a Baylor Bear.
Even though my heart longs to be in a college in a big city full of internship and career opportunities, I love my university and I could never transfer.