Sophomore Year: The Best Year of My Life

I was dreading coming back to school.

My freshman year here at Iowa was very meh. I made friends and I got good grades, but I felt as if I didn't fit in anywhere. Everyone said Iowa City would feel like a "second home," but I never got that feeling. To say the least, I was very excited to be back home for the summer. However, summer usually tends to go by very fast, so before I knew it, I was packing up my room at home to move back to Iowa City. At one point in the summer, I was seriously contemplating transferring. Maybe I should be closer to home? Maybe a four-year university isn't for me? I spent a lot of time thinking, but never actually took any action. I decided I would just go through another year at Iowa, and I am so glad I did. 

Since it's my sophomore year, I decided I'd take advantage of the large university and all it has to offer. I've pushed myself out of my comfort zone any way I could. First, I joined the wonderful Her Campus University of Iowa chapter. As a business major, you wouldn't expect me to join an organization about writing articles and such but that's the beauty of it. Her Campus has given me a place on campus where I feel comfortable and happy. In addition, I joined a sorority. I never thought I would be a part of Greek life, but I wanted to try new things. Joining a sorority has been the best decision I have made this year. I have met so many wonderful women that motivate me each and every day to better myself and to stride towards all my goals. Her Campus and Alpha Chi Omega have given me the second home that I was searching for my freshman year. 

I also decided I was going to get my mental health under control. Now that Iowa City was starting to feel like home, I needed to address the issues I had always ignored. I never paid much attention to my mental health because I didn't feel it was necessary, but then it started to affect my grades. I would fail exams for classes I performed well in, and I was just becoming a different person. The added stress from being involved in so much more this year was amazing, yet it felt like it was the root of all my problems. In February, I decided enough was enough and visited my doctor. I'm so thankful I realized mental health is a serious issue. Since seeking professional help, I feel much better. My grades are improving and so is my confidence.

Sophomore year has paved the path for the rest of my college experience and my professional life. Everything I have accomplished this year has made me so thankful for the University of Iowa. The relationships and experiences I have made will stick with me forever.

Thank you, sophomore year.