My sister liked the University of Kentucky—it has seven cafeterias. Centre has only one. Weak competition to her 10-year-old mind.
While cafeterias, and the
food they served, were critical to my sister, my priorities were a bit different.
A veteran of summer camps at various universities, I knew where to look, what
questions to ask when touring a new campus; I was the weird kid peeking behind
the bathroom shower curtains, asking questions about laundry facilities,
farmer’s markets, and other quality-of-life issues not addressed in the
prospective student brochures.
The day before moving to
Centre, I alternated between worrying about how my mountain of belongings could
possibly fit into a shared 9x12 room, and bigger questions of “Did I made the
right decision?”, “Am I settling?”, and “Is Centre too
close to home?”
Helping to calm my fears
were President Roush’s parting words from the Scholars’ Weekend: “No matter
where you end up, dive right in and don’t look back.”
My doubts and fears became
obsolete after the first week of classes—I quickly realized that Centre
is much more than academics, student/faculty ratios, and even its single cafeteria
(don’t tell my sister!). Centre is the familiar beeping of the walk sign, the
stress of deadlines, and being unable to have a coherent conversation when
walking across campus because of all the people you have to say hi to! It’s the
random giant trampolines outside the Student Center, Lady GaGa and Backstreet Boys playing in Cowan on Fridays, lack-of-sleep competitions,
movie nights, and homework.
At Centre, I've found the
small classrooms, engaging academics, and yes, good food that my college-searching
self was seeking, but more importantly, I have found a life of my own far beyond brochure or website descriptions.