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A Farewell to Appalachian State University

Graduation is a momentous occasion; we are closing our undergraduate chapter and opening an unknown new chapter. Like most college Seniors, I have been thinking about graduation since my Freshman year of college. The only problem with thinking about graduation so far ahead is that I hate saying “goodbye.” I get the purpose of it. It grants us the power to close one chapter and open a new one without feeling guilty for the ties that we may potentially break. This all just seems too soon. I never thought that I would be graduating from college a year early, and certainly never thought that it would mean I would be graduating during a global pandemic. After signing up for an in-person commencement ceremony, everything revolving around graduation feels more real. It is so bittersweet, which is why I think that it is necessary to say my goodbyes to Appalachian State.

[bf_image id="67cwmkgcqznc633ththbs3tq"] I remember the first time that I ever stepped on Appalachian State’s campus. I was 12 years old. My older brother was here for a tour and our mother took me along for the ride. It was absolutely mesmerizing! From that day forward, I knew that Appalachian State was my college, and it is insane to think that I am graduating from the first university that I have ever toured, eight years ago. Part of me is unsure as to whether or not I would have even applied to Appalachian State if it weren’t for my brother so, in that respect, I thank him.  

Coming to Appalachian State from living overseas in Italy, I had a strange feeling that I didn’t need or want friends. In my past, I had experienced toxic friendships where it was incredibly hard for me to make connections that weren’t surface level. One of the beauties of Appalachian State is that people are not nearly as judgmental as I thought people were in my head. In fact, I owe a lot of my successes in the friends department to my freshman roommate, Madison. Through her, I gained more than just a group of friends. I gained a family that I can trust with everything and anything. Through them, I started to understand the value of friendships, and my whole mindset about friends changed. I thank them, in more ways than one, for saving me, which makes saying goodbye that much harder.

[bf_image id="qf7pma-839zdc-un5t5"] Before starting college, my father told me to stay as far away from Greek Life as possible. I listened to that advice for a while, still joining clubs and organizations that I loved being a part of more than anything. In what would’ve been my Sophomore year of college, I decided to do what I wanted to do, joining two organizations affiliated with Greek Life. In more ways than one, I am glad that I didn’t listen to naysayers. Part of going to college is being able to learn who you are and become the person that you want to be. So, I owe a fond farewell to the organizations that welcomed me with open arms: Phi Mu, Phi Sigma Pi, Sigma Alpha Lambda, Her Campus, Active Minds, and Appalachian Popular Programming Society. I would recommend branching out and doing those things that you may be unsure of because you may find yourself surrounded by the best group of people ever (hello Phi Fam)!

With no regrets, I bid Appalachian State University farewell. Cheers to the memories that I have been able to make and cheers to the people who are either entering the real world or starting Graduate school like myself. Congratulations to the Class of 2021 and goodbye to Appalachian State University!

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Erica Hoyer

App State '21

Senior Psychology Major with a Concentration in Educational Studies.
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