The Best Decision I Made for My St. Lawrence Career
My St. Lawrence story begins during my freshman year when I was on the track team. I had been running and jumping my whole life, and running track in the next chapter of my life at St. Lawrence seemed like the natural next step. I didn’t give it much thought as it was something I enjoyed and excelled at all my life; what could be different about it in college?
Although I wasn’t the strongest athlete, I enjoyed it enough to keep running and pushing myself to improve and I liked my coaches, who cared about me both on and off the field. At the beginning of the spring season, I sprained my ankle badly, after finally recovering from a different foot injury. The injury was painful and unfortunate, but in hindsight it was the wake-up call I didn’t know I needed, because it allowed me to reconsider what I wanted my future at St. Lawrence to look like. My body was weak and I was yearning for more. For social and academic reasons, I decided it was time to quit.
“I quit” were always words that scared me because of society’s tendency to demonize quitting. However, what I didn’t know at the time, is that those words would ultimately be the catalyst for my much-needed transformation at SLU. I realized I wanted to be busy on campus and create a schedule for the future that would involve and engage me in as many aspects of campus as possible. Soon after quitting, I applied for everything that remotely interested me. Since I’m an art and art history major, I applied for and started a job working in our Richard F. Brush Art Gallery on campus as well as building costumes in our Theatre Department's Costume Shop. Soon after that, I applied, was accepted to, and completed a semester-long training program to become a guide for the school’s Outing Program. Next, I set my sights abroad and was accepted into the University of Georgia’s art program in Cortona, Italy, for Spring of 2020. Then, I infiltrated the theme house community. Living in the Java House, which runs our on-campus music venue “The Java Barn”, has by far been the best thing that I have ever done to better myself, and expanded my St. Lawrence experience. Being constantly surrounded by positive, fun-loving, hardworking people has been immensely rewarding.
Running track feels like a distant memory. One that I am forever grateful for because of the people I met, the sense of comradery I enjoyed; and because it helped me realize what a gift time is, which I have never taken for granted. Now, I have gained a house full of lifelong friends, given more attention to my academic passions, and have had the opportunity to work exciting jobs. All of which have enabled me to help contribute to my education, as well as gain new skills and experiences. A huge part of why I love being an Admissions Ambassador is because it gives me a unique platform to share my St. Lawrence experience to prospective students, who are questioning if this place is the place for them. I always reassure those people, it is. St. Lawrence may be a small school in the North Country, but the opportunities for personal growth are abundant if you’re willing to look for them. Now, I reflect on all the things I’ve been involved in and I’m grateful for each of them, but I do not feel shame for not continuing down that path. I’ve learned that quitting is sometimes necessary, and that even something as negative as a nasty injury has the potential to catapult you into a plethora of new, exciting experiences.