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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Virginia Tech chapter.

On September 1, I submitted my first application for a full-ride scholarship to study for my master’s in the United Kingdom. Then, I had my existential crisis.

A few days before I submitted my application, I had heard other girls in our Her Campus meeting discussing their GRE exams and how they needed to fill out their grad school applications.

While preparing for the process, it didn’t sink in until I was staring at my scholarship application. In front of me, my official transcript and personal statements stared back as if to say it was almost time.

The sensation of sitting there, looking at the application, solidified that I’m no longer 18 and starting college. I’m 21 and moving on with my life, laughing with friends I’ll have to say goodbye to in mere months.

Though, when I lay in bed, watching the rain drip from the leaves outside my window, I’m reminded how change is inevitable. I won’t always be a residential student leader or an undergraduate student — one day, my life won’t be tied to academia.

And I’m terrified of what that future holds.

This process hasn’t been easy, and it took me months to realize I wanted to continue my education. I was — or rather, still am — paralyzed with this dreadful fear that I won’t be good enough to get into my program. I’m sure many other seniors are starting to feel that way too.

However, when I look around me, I realize there is so much to look forward to.

We may be graduating and moving on with our lives. We may be leaving behind the people we knew and growing into the adults we always believed we would be — but we’re not alone. We don’t have to dwell in the past because those who love us will always be there.

As I write this, I know that no matter where I end up, I can always come back to Virginia Tech and to the people that I’ve met here. Whether I am in Scotland or Wisconsin, I know I can find my people again, and we will start back where we left off.

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/ Unsplash

I guess this is the process. This is how we become who we’re meant to be — and I can’t wait to see where this leads.

This isn’t the end — it’s a new chapter.

Madi Armstrong

Virginia Tech '23

Madi Armstrong is a senior studying multimedia journalism with minors in Spanish and creative writing. Through writing, she hopes to empower those around her to advocate for what they believe in and to use their experiences in ways to help others. Proud to be part of Her Campus, she hopes to leave a lasting impact and create an environment where everyone feels welcome.