It’s September once again, and now that the first week of school has passed, I hope everyone is over the new semester jitters.
I think congratulations are in order for surviving awkward classroom introductions and syllabus day; I know it was grueling.
I’ll admit that I couldn’t fall asleep until three in the morning the day before classes started because I was too busy thinking, “What if the professor makes us introduce ourselves? What if they make us say one interesting fact about ourselves? What is an interesting fact about me? I’m not interesting…I am just awkward.”
Something about first days just freaks me out. Maybe it’s because the first day of sixth grade my teacher asked me how I spelled my middle name, and I said, “I don’t know…” Of course, I knew how to spell my middle name, but everyone was staring at me, and I froze up. Traumatizing. Thankfully, none of my professors asked me how to spell my middle name this year, so my first day went smoothly.
I know that this semester will bring a few things without fail. Fall at University of Michigan-Dearborn is the season of standing in the bookstore line for twenty minutes to buy an energy drink. We get to campus thirty minutes before class starts to stalk people for parking, unless the secret of the secluded lots has gotten out.
Most everyone is walking around attempting to nonchalantly look at schedules because we have no idea where our classes are. It’s the time of year where beautiful orange barrels line the lanes of Southfield Freeway and cursing traffic. Don’t get me wrong, fall isn’t just a blur of papers and orange barrels. The start of the semester means seeing friends again and to making new ones. I’ve already reunited with friends and bled Maize and Blue at my first Michigan football tailgate and game of the season. I can’t wait to lead The Michigan Journal this year and be a part of Panhellenic’s sorority recruitment.
I’ll be entering my third year of college this semester, and I’ll admit that I was not nearly this involved when I started out at UM-D. I drove to school, stalked people for parking, went to classes, and went home my entire first semester. That isn’t the college experience at all. The best advice I can give students, new or not, is to get involved. A sport or organization is out there for everyone. UM-D is more than awkward first days and parking that makes me want to cry, I promise.
Take a chance and become a part of something more. Maybe you chose UM-D because it’s close to home, or maybe you received a scholarship, but you should want to stay here for other reasons. Stay here because you love the classes and professors. Stay here because you can’t imagine not being a part of your organization. Stay here because you’ve made friends who have impacted you most of all. All it takes is a leap of faith. Welcome back, University of Michigan-Dearborn.