I’ve Only Been at CofC for Two Weeks, and I'm Already Feeling the "Cougar Bond"

I grew up in the great state of Texas, in the lively city of Dallas, which is hours away from the coast where I am now. While I can recall several nights of hiding in the laundry room, listening to the tornado sirens go off when reports of hurricane Dorian were appearing more and more everywhere I looked, I felt completely out of my element. 

It was Sunday night, just before 7 when my phone was exploding as people chattered about the Governor of South Carolina declared a mandatory evacuation. The school hadn’t even officially responded to the plans for Monday yet, and I was already on the phone with my parents, trying to decide what I was going to do. 

By the time I'd decided that it would be worth it to go all the way home, back to Texas, for the week, every flight out of CHS to Dallas was booked. Anxious, I started looking for other options. Though I had only been at school for just over two weeks, the new friends that I made were offering to take me home and let me stay for the week. Luckily, I was able to find a flight out of Charlotte and found a friend from Rockhill to take me to the airport. 

I arrived at the airport hours early, having overcompensated for time, worried that there would be evacuation traffic, and went to customer service to see if I could leave on an earlier flight. I began chatting with the airline attendant, only to find out that her own daughter had graduated from CofC this year and that she was from my hometown in Texas. At the end of our conversation, she smiled at me and handed me my new ticket saying that it was “the cougar bond.” Not only had she gotten me on an earlier flight, but she had even upgraded my seat. 

In only two weeks of school, I made amazing friends that were there to offer support for the hurrication and was already seeing connections to the school outside of Charleston. 

As the third week of school comes to its start, I know that I am in the right place and couldn’t be happier about my college decision.