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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at SBU chapter.

I stared at the brick and ivy dormitory building that towered over me. Five stories of beauty and history, complete with its own bell tower. I reluctantly turned toward my mother, who made it clear she had already fallen in love with the school. There was nothing innately wrong with the school, and even its charm persisted through the storm clouds on our foggy tour day. I was in my second year of college search, and with each new school came countless questions and anxieties. 

I believed I didn’t want the American college experience at all if it didn’t involve the grandeur of electrifying football games, over-the-top tailgates, and enormous marble lecture halls that could seat hundreds of eager minds. Therefore, my mom’s suggestion of a small liberal arts school in the hills of New York’s Southern Tier did not appeal to me in the slightest bit. She justified her persistence with a hard-to-refute combination- she was both an outstanding mother and school counselor who supposedly knew exactly what was best for her daughter.

As a high school counselor, my mother’s career consisted of touring and exploring multitudes of colleges in order to inform her students about them. She would call me during her lunch hour and say, “Katie, something about this one feels different, in the best way possible.” At several points, frustration would wash over me. Could my own mother fail to accept that I wanted absolutely nothing to do with this small school in the middle of nowhere?

My friends were beginning to receive their acceptance letters, as was I, yet I had felt frustrated with myself for implanting the false illusion that I could somehow afford a large out-of-state school. Months passed, and still, the highly esteemed woman that was my mother could not understand me. I was stressed, hormonal, and overwhelmed by the massive life shifts that were about to occur. I often impulsively lashed out at my parents or broke down crying.

I thought about leaving behind my friends, my family, and my childhood. I quickly became tired of constantly being in a bad mood and decided to listen to the small whisper in my mind that pointed me toward my mother’s inclinations. Months later, I sit in an opulent library, powered by ambient lighting and young, ambitious minds. This library is in fact, part of a small school in New York’s Southern Tier. My days are packed with studying, laughter, and priceless memories. I do not remember a time when I was so in love with simply existing. The community and culture here at St. Bonaventure University are simply a perfect fit for me, it just took another perspective for me to realize this. 

Oftentimes, the people we love know us better than we claim to know ourselves. Our society preaches independence and self-sufficiency- and rightfully so. Yet, I have learned that asking for help and advice when necessary is not a sign of weakness, but of strength. In the midst of my teenage angst, I felt I had to prove that I could make wise decisions for myself without help from others. If you are lucky enough to have people in your life that you love and value, the least you can do is trust in their opinions and help when they offer it. Who knows, it may lead you to a small school in the “middle of nowhere” that completely changes your life.

Katie is a social media executive for Her Campus at St. Bonaventure University. Her experience with social media, advertising, and writing allow her to combine her passions and advance her university's chapter of HC. She has been a part of Her Campus since freshman year. It has been her favorite on-campus extracurricular to become involved with. Katie is a second-year student studying Strategic Communication and Marketing. She finds joy in being involved on campus through various organizations including Her Campus, Jandoli Women in Communication, and College Democrats. She is Vice President of SBU's Freshman Leadership Program. She is also a full-time student ambassador who enthusiastically leads tours for prospective students. (Request her as your tour guide!) In her free time, you can find Katie reading, hiking, and laughing with her friends. She loves spending time outdoors, especially in the fall. Her guilty pleasures are copious amounts of (iced) coffee and country music. Some of her favorite artists include Chris Stapleton, Fleetwood Mac, and Luke Combs. Katie will eagerly engage in any conversation about her beloved hometown, Buffalo, New York. She will likely attempt to convert you to become a Buffalo Bills fan, and could talk about Josh Allen for hours. Post-grad, Katie hopes to be using her creative talents towards a fulfilling career in the world of advertising.