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As college application season is in full swing, I thought that I would share my experience with the transition to college:

I knew my whole life that I wanted to leave Florida for college, but beyond that, I didn’t have a clue. After being accepted to UVA in February, I had a gut feeling that it was meant for me. I bought way to many sweatshirts from the bookstore, and I proudly told everyone that I was heading to Charlottesville. At the time, it still seemed like it was a distant future, like I still had all the time in the world to spend with my family and friends. But, February quickly turned into August, and my time was up.

Before arriving on Grounds, I was a mess of emotions. I was scared to leave the only only community I had ever known, I was nervous for the course work, but despite the fear and anxiety, I was excited to meet new people and experience new things. I had gone to the same school since I was four years old, so the thought of moving across the country to a university of nearly 20,000 students was daunting to say the least. I didn’t know if I’d fit in, if I’d make friends, or if I’d be okay without the safety net I grew up with. 

Move-in day rolled around before I blinked. My parents and I packed up the car and drove from Florida to Virginia. The car ride was filled with tears and laughter, but as we pulled into Charlottesville, I knew this was the place for me. After hauling my dorm decorations and almost all of the clothes I own into my dorm room, and saying goodbye to my parents, I had the feeling that I was starting a new chapter in my life. The characters reset and the background changed, and I was along for the ride. I learned new phrases (“I’m hip?”), learned how different and similar various places across the country are, and I most importantly learned just how much kindness can impact a person’s life. And this school is not lacking any of the latter. If you even look like you’re lost or need help, someone will have your back. Even if it’s a stranger holding both double sets of doors for you when walking into Newcomb, the little things make the biggest difference.

Before I knew it, I had formed my new life. The leaves are changing, I have a group of friends consisting of some of the best people I’ve ever met, and I quite honestly couldn’t be happier. I love my classes, I love my people, and I love this school. 

I am currently a first year at the University of Virginia and I am from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida! I plan on majoring in either psychology or media studies. I'm interested in reading, fashion, beauty, and self-care!
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