What a Year



I was feeling very anxious when my parents and I packed up the car and drove out of my little town towards Granville. I had so many expectations floating around in my head but also knew that I had no idea what to expect. College was going to be a whole new experience of living with other people my age, eating meals in a dining hall, taking rigorous courses, and establishing myself in places of interest. By the end of high school I had been a part of groups/teams that I wanted to be in and I had even managed to hold a few leadership positions. How could I go from being on top of my game to being a freshman in the big, bad world of college?


The first day of classes, I had something that us Denisonians call an advising circle. This group consists of a handful of freshman students, a professor, and an older student mentor for the purpose of smoothly transitioning first year students into Denison. On that first day I met Michaela Allen, a senior psychology and communications major. Michaela mentioned that she was the head of an organization known as HerCampus and my attention was instantly grabbed. I had read countless articles on that website before moving into college in hopes of preparing myself for the new life. To be honest, I didn’t even know that Denison had a chapter!


So Michaela and I talked and she convinced me to join HerCampus and start writing bi-weekly articles about whatever my heart desired. My first article was about being an adult, something that I am still trying to navigate. But managing college and the new independence that comes with it was made tremendously easier because of Michaela and the HerCampus team. Being able to openly write and have my work published on a public website for the first time ever was so cool and excited me for what was to come. I belonged to something when I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to find my place at all.

Fast-forward from September 2018 to now, May 2019, and I am so beyond honored to be taking over Michaela’s leadership position at HerCampus when she graduates. I know that I am young but Michaela and my friends and family (my biggest fans) have helped to show me that I can handle this responsibility. I have only (almost) completed one year at Denison, but I take comfort in knowing that I have somewhat, kind of, maybe started to establish myself here on the hill.


To Michaela: Thank you so very much for everything that you have ever helped me with this year. Every little piece of advice has made a tremendous impact on this little freshman’s life and I cannot begin to express my gratitude. We only shared one year here, but I am so happy that I had the chance to meet you, be your friend, and to have your guidance with HerCampus. And more than HerCampus, thank you for trusting me to continue your work in the Big Brothers Big Sisters volunteer program. I look forward to hopefully making a small difference in a little girl’s life. Your determination, creativity, and positivity is truly infectious and I hope that I have at least half of those qualities by the time I graduate.


So for now, farewell to The Hill. I am so excited to go home to see all of my people, but I cannot wait to be back here in three and a half months. I am so lucky that I have two places that I care about so much and can call my home. What a year. Go Big Red.