Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Why it's All in the Visit...

Happy Tuesday everyone!!

I just finished my first class for the day and the week has definitely started off well!! It's been a stressful month, with midterms, getting back into the groove of the spring semester, adjusting to new classes and professors. One of the bright parts of my recent life, however, is getting the chance to meet many of the accepted SMC Class of 2016 via the Facebook page and Knight Chats :)

Today, my wonderful readers, I want to start the day off by telling you why it's all in the visit. Now, what do I mean by this saying? Well, I'm going to bring you back to May of 2009, my Junior year of high school...

(This is the part that we travel back in time hahahaha!!)

I was in my high school gym, walking up the blue and gold staircase (go GCA blue and gold cougars :) to receive my award from my principal, Sr. Carol. It was a vibrant purple folder with rich gold writing with the name "Saint Michael's College." I had just won the Book Award for Scholarship and Service and could not have been more excited!!

Except... I had never heard of Saint Michael's College, much less where it was.

When I opened the folder and read the lovely congratulations letter, I finally did find out more about this Saint Michael's College, including it's location. I think my exact words were:

17 year old Alex: "VERMONT!? WHAT!? That's like... a million years from New York. Umm... yeah, that isn't happening, ever. "

As the summer before my senior year of high school arrived, it was time to plan my college visits. I wasn't decided on where I wanted to visit, let alone whether I wanted to go away or stay close to home for college. I picked a wide variety of  schools that I wanted to check out. My mother, being the wonderful person she is, mentioned that we should take a trip to Saint Michael's College.

You know what I said? "Ma, are you crazy??? We are not taking a 7 hr trip to Vermont. No. Nuh uh."

Well, you know that saying, "Mother knows best?" Well, yeah, she does :) So, we made the appointment for a tour and info session sometime in July. (This would be a good time to thank my dad for driving the 7 hours as well- so thanks Dad!!)

When we got off exit 15 on I-89, we immediately rushed to catch our tour, which we were slightly late for. I still remember Stephanie, our wonderful Hoehl receptionist, running after our tour guide so we could join the tour. It's funny, because even though none of the students were on campus, I still got the chance to take in what buildings I would be going to and from as a student each day.

After my tour, I knew SMC was a school I wanted to apply to. When I got my acceptance letter (which also was that same vibrant purple and gold as my Book Award) I literally jumped up and down, so excited that I got in to Saint Mike's!!!!

In my acceptance letter was a picture frame  that said, "Picture Yourself Here." I realized later that this became the motto of picking the college that I would be spending the next four years at. I had to narrow which schools I liked the best and then re-visit them. I had to picture myself going to class every day, joining the different clubs offered, and even picture myself going to the cafeteria in my pajamas for Sunday brunch. I needed to be able to see the place I went to school as my second home, the place where I could grow as a leader, a friend, a students, and most of all as a person.

I know how it feels like to feel as if the world is on your shoulders because you can't decide where to go. I know it feels like to just want to already decide and be set on where you're going. I also know that if I hadn't taken the chance to re-visit my top schools, I wouldn't have been able to picture myself there.

When I went back to SMC on my second round of touring, it was a really cold and rainy day in April. Even the weather couldn't stop me from realizing this was the school for me. Having the chance to meet and ask questions of current students, talk to professors about course work, and even having lunch in Alliot, I got that feeling... that this was the place for me.
Saint Michael's College would become my second home!!

That, my wonderful readers, is why it is all in the visit. If you can somehow get to the schools that you really want to go to, then do it. So many colleges during this time offer open houses, academic days, or daily tours (mine is Tuesdays at 3pm :) where you can step into the shoes of a student and picture yourself there.

I can guarantee you... it will make all the difference :)
Please never hesitate to get in touch with me, whether it be via Formspring, Twitter, or email- I am always more than happy to answer any questions you may have and adore interacting with my wonderful readers!!

Until next time, I send you my very best wishes,
Alex :)

1 comment:

  1. Alex,
    What a beautiful post. If I was a senior, this alone would make me pick St. Mike's!
    Really, it brought tears to my eyes, because this is similar to how Taylor felt too. (Mom knows best in her story as well ;)
    You guys are really blessed to be SMC girls.
    -Mrs. Mills