When I first came to St. Lawrence, I was excited to turn a new page in my life. I couldn’t wait to be on my own. This excitement quickly turned to fear when I realized this meant meeting new people. In high school, I was friendly with lots of people but had a strong core group of friends. We did everything together, so making new friends was something that I had not done in a couple of years. This was a daunting task.
At that time, and even today, I struggle with change. I rely heavily on routines that help me stay productive and get me through the day. Going to college was a fresh start and for me, it was going to be the first time in my life that I would have to set my own routines.
To say the least, I was not very good at it. Just like high school, after my first year here, there were a lot of people that I was friendly with, but I had not found a home on campus. I had no idea who I was going to live with sophomore year. At this point, I considered transferring from St. Lawrence. I believed that it would be easier to follow some of my friends from high school to other schools instead of trying hard to find those friends here. Everything changed when I met a sophomore that taught yoga, of all things. She told me about this place on campus called “Commons College” a theme house on campus that was accepting applications. I went to an open house knowing nothing about what a theme house was or what it means to be in one. I got to know some of the house members but did not know if Commons was meant for me. It was a long shot when I decided to apply. Part of this process is an interview to get to know you better. Late on a Tuesday night, I made my way over to 78 Park Street. Walking into this beautiful white-pillared home I realized that it was just that, a home. I walked through two sliding doors and looked at all 25 members of the house, and I knew that the house was a special place. It was a community that I wanted to be a part of.
In the passing weeks, I realized that St. Lawrence is a special place. It has a home for every student on campus. There are singles and doubles, fraternities and sororities, five- and seven-person suites that most colleges have. But, there is this crazy diversity community of theme houses that fill in the holes that these options leave. There are theme houses for gaming, the outdoors, and women’s resources. There is even a theme house that runs a music venue on campus. The best part of all of this is the communities that these houses offer to students and the broader community that it offers to campus.