An Open Letter to New Paltz as I Prepare to Leave

I never imagined when I walked onto this campus over four years ago that I would have fallen in love so hard and so fast. Now that I am registering for my last semester of classes it is time for me to start mentally preparing to say goodbye to my favorite place. I have had so many milestones over my time here and I owe all of that to this campus and the people here. I met my boyfriend, who I have been with since Freshman year. I joined a sorority and gained a home away from home. There have been ups and downs as there would be at any place. But overall New Paltz really has been the best safe haven and amazing place for me. I feel after having spent five years here I could spend another forty and never want to leave. However, I will say my goodbyes to this place that has been home to me for so long and I will go knowing that it will welcome me back with open arms if I ever choose to return.

I have made some of my greatest memories at this place, from joining my sorority, meeting my boyfriend, to finding a major I love and falling in love with the program. I grew as a person here from a scared and shy 18 year old into an assertive and confident 22 year old young woman. I have had some crazy nights out, just like any college student. But I have also had some really calm nights where I've been able to keep my love of reading and learning. I have met so many new people here and if I could go back in time 18 year old Kayleigh would never believe that I could possibly be the woman I am today. 

I am not quite ready to part with this place but I know that I have gotten everything I can out of it for now. I will definitely be returning at some point soon but I will begin making peace with the fact that I have to leave this beautiful campus and the people on it behind.