As my last few days as a Florida State University student are coming to an end, I’ve started to reminisce about all the wonderful times I’ve had here. I know how cliché that sounds—I’m 22 years old, not 40, looking back on the “good old times.” But it feels like the last four years of my life have gone by in the blink of an eye, and my heart physically hurts when I imagine not walking these steep hills again after April 29. When I think about all the best times I’ve had here, I’m reminded of late-night movie showings at the Student Life Center, celebrating the relief from the Florida heat with Club Downunder’s winter wonderland events and, most importantly, being blessed to be a part of Her Campus at FSU.
The last half of my college career has been spent producing articles for this organization, creating bonds with the most fabulous women and having experiences I never thought I would. While learning how to edit properly and expanding my writing range, I’ve had the opportunity to write about basically everything and anything that I want. From determining which Taylor Swift songs are perfect for characters of my favorite TV shows to breaking news articles about Bachelor contestants and interviews with powerful women, Her Campus at FSU made me fall in love with writing again.
So, thank you to the most inspiring women for welcoming me into this girl gang with the widest of open arms. For giving me a reason to get out of my bed Tuesday nights and kick ass at MadSo trivia. For including me in conversations at the dinner table when I felt anxious about meeting new people. For introducing me to some of my favorite people in the world and allowing me to watch them grow in their personal and professional lives. Thank you for reminding me what it feels like to enjoy what you’re writing about and that everyone’s words have an impact on someone at some point. For pushing me out of my comfort zone and forcing me to embrace the difficult and strange. For making me realize that my dream in life is to be able to write about Taylor Swift and Teen Wolf without feeling ashamed.
But most of all, thank you for helping me find myself again. I started at FSU as a neuroscience major, and it took me two years to find my home with Her Campus, even though I had known about it since high school. Truth be told, I just didn’t feel good enough to be a part of this wonderful organization. I had doubts about my writing skills. I felt like I didn’t have the style they would be looking for. I worried about stepping out of my comfort zone and falling on my face. For two years—even after I had changed my major to English—I avoided something that I’d wanted to do for years prior, something that I knew I would love, all because I was so used to doubting myself. This organization, and the amazing women who are a part of it, are why I am applying to jobs with huge publishing companies and accepting interviews. They are the reason I’ve stopped doubting everything about myself and started falling in love with myself instead. I am constantly inspired by every person here, and they continue to make me want to be the best version of myself I can be. Thank you for everything you’ve given me.
If you have even the softest little voice telling you to join Her Campus, listen to it, and don’t be an idiot like me. These have been the best years of my life, packed with personal and professional experiences I will never forget. And it’s all because of this group of girl bosses. Let me tell you: if I could say anything to freshman and sophomore Natalie, it would be to strap on her big girl boots and apply. I would do college all over again if it meant that I got to find my family sooner.