Wednesday, June 1, 2011

College -- Been There, Done That

I’m done college. No, really, I’m done college. YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

Now that it’s been over two weeks, I can actually discuss this topic rationally and without a flood of emotion. Ask me 10 days ago and I would have started crying. The last two weeks of school I was truly sad – when I walked up the steps to Luther Bonney, while circling the parking garage in search of a spot and when I found out printing was free in the lab during finals week. Even after graduation I was an emotional wreck. I couldn’t believe I was done. I was lost. I didn’t know where to go next, what to do next or how to not wake up to an alarm. I was out of my routine and hating every minute of it. Luckily for you, I’m baaaaaccckkk and the future looks friggen bright. Like I said, now that I’m done I can truly celebrate my accomplishments and give myself a good ole’ pat on the back.

The week leading up to graduation was dubbed Senior Week and act like college seniors we did. My friends and I had a ton of fun. We went bowling – big ball and I proudly threw a couple spares with a 12-pounder. Don’t read too far into that, I’m really not good. Here’s my I-just-threw-my-third-gutter-ball-in-a-row reaction:

And here’s Danielle, Alesia and I:

We did trivia and by ‘did’ I mean ‘dominated.’ We won. Thanks to my Backstreet Boys, cereal and running sneaker knowledge, Corey’s animal factoids and Alesia’s memorization of Jenny’s phone number. You know … 8-7-6-5-3-0-9. Here are the boys all squished in the back seat. I drove and they let Alesia sit in the front. We all know it’s so they could snuggle.

We went to Alumni Happy Hour and out for College Night in the Old Port. With the exception of my bra strap hanging out, don’t Alesia and I look cute?

Misty even joined us for some fun that night!

Look who else I found? This is some back-in-the-day St. James Seahawk and Biddeford Tiger action – Carly and Tiffany, who I’ve known since I was a little kid.

Then, on Saturday, we graduated! Here’s Danielle, Alesia and I before donning the cap and gown:

This might be my most favorite picture of the day. Alesia and I went through college pretty much side-by-side. We had the same major and minor and I don’t know what I would have done without her. I do know I would have been a lot more stressed and without a ton of laughs if she wasn’t there.

Here’s another kid I’m glad I had around all those years. Kyle ALWAYS made me laugh and helped me realize when I needed to chill out. We had tons of classes together and could always count on Kyle showing up a tad bit fashionably late, but I loved it – gave me something to look forward to after the initial five minutes of class went by. I know he hates this picture, but I’m okay with it.

And Big Jon and I … I know you remember him from the Into the Mud Challenge post. Funny story – After we graduated, we realized through some Facebook chatter that we have a lot of mutual friends we had no idea about. Small, small world. Finally, a family photo that we all look happy. I have been trying to perfect this forever.

That’s it I guess. Four-and-a-half years at the University of Southern Maine and I couldn’t be happier with my decisions to date. I remember, and I know my mom and high school athletic trainer do, too, just how much I didn’t want to be a Husky. After a couple months of being pretty sick with mono, the last thing I wanted to do was go to the college everyone I knew from high school went to. I expected to see these former classmates of mine all the time, but truth be told, I rarely did. I had classes with a few of them, but it was nothing like I expected. Turns out, USM was exactly where I needed to be and I can proudly say that it was one of the best experiences of my life. I was dedicated to my studies, involved in student-led organizations and represented the university as a Peer Advisor, Orientation Leader and Mentor. I learned so much about myself and developed into the girl (that’s right, still a girl) I am today thanks to my experience at USM. I discovered my love for sport management and had the confidence to work toward new goals with the support of my professors and peers. I am happy to say that I truly sucked the life out of my college experience and I don’t regret a thing. I can move onto the next stage of my life knowing that I will succeed, pleased with the past and excited for the future.

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