Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Gift of Being an Upperclassman in the SMC Family...

Happy Saturday everyone!!

I hope everyone is having a wonderful day!! It's really blustery (as my favorite book character as a kid, Pooh Bear would say) day and I'm getting pumped for our Welcome Back Bash, where the Student Association puts on so many great events and delicious food (Steak? Lobster? What other college kid has the chance to have this?) later today.

These past two weeks that I have been back have been crazy, to say the least. While in the moment, I may get a bit stressed out, dealing with classes, activities, and even thinking of what to make for dinner now that I have a kitchen, I absolutely love it. My best advice to any student is to get involved as much as you can, but finding a good balance between everything, especially with your academics.

Today though, I want to talk to my readers about why I love being an upperclassman. I know, strange topic, right? Well, it's not because I'm not new on the totem poll, or because I'm older and wiser (ehh that's still debatable :) 

Honest reason though? Well, even I'm not sure. However, I really think it stems from the fact that I love being there for my new first year friends and being able to give advice and tips to them. That's also the reason I absolutely adore being a blogger as well- since my first year (aka two years ago ahhhhh!!) I have been so unbelievably lucky to be a SMC blogger and help give advice and share my experiences with others through my blog.

I think the other thing I love about being an upperclassman is because I have been able to experience the SMC family first hand and want to share it with others. I am the person who will probably give you a huge hug and yell across in Alliot to my friends, will invite you for meals, who asks how it's going and if you need anything, I'll be there. I love making people's day with the simplest things and love remembering the little things about people.

I am not alone in this.

The SMC family is one of the best places to be. One Winooski Park is my second home and being able to share that with others is the best feeling in the world. When I was a first year, I was lucky enough to have had upperclassmen do the same things for me- looking out for me and making sure I was adjusting well. I still remember to this day my first mass coordinator, Melissa (who is now my amazing friend whom I simply adore) helping me go through the steps of my first mass, and being so patient, even though I totally messed up terribly. When I became a member of LINK, I was so welcomed by the upperclassmen, who helped me figure out the balance between my academics, my activities, and personal me and my faith time. When I started doing MOVE activities (especially MOVE apple picking) I was able to gain experience from the upperclassmen leaders who took the time to talk to me about why they loved service and how they were able to get involved as freshmen. Being chosen to be a blogger my freshman year and aspiring to be a tour guide through the Founders Society with upperclassmen coordinators who helped me to be the best ambassador I could be for SMC...

All of these things led me to where I am today :)

Now, two years later, I am a leader of LINK, a weekly tour guide (come to my tour Tuesdays at 3!!), a blogger, got to lead the same MOVE Apple Picking trip that inspired me to become a part of it, and can now actually not mess up mass too badly ;)

Having this amazing experience with upperclassmen when I was a freshman, I now have the chance to do the same for the new students that come in. I want to welcome them with open arms (and probably really enthusiastic hugs and a slight scream of hello- I may be a  little enthusiastic, sorry haha :) I want to be there for them with advice, comfort, and love. I want to share silly stories of my time at SMC and help make the transition easier.

Most of all though? I just want them to realize that they're not a part of a community, but of a family. One that will accept and respect them for who they are. I may be one little piece of that and may not make that much of a difference, but together, we are so united. Let me tell you, once you're apart of this family...

It will always be there for you when you need it :)

So, as an upperclassman, if you see me around campus, read my blog, or even randomly follow me on Twitter or saw me in Alliot one day, please don't hesitate to say hi, have lunch with me, or even ask for a hug- I'm absolutely happy to do so and I thank goodness every day that SMC allowed me to experience the love and support of a family that I can now give back to others :)

If you ever have any questions at all, please feel free to get in contact with me via Formspring, Twitter, or shoot me an email- I always love hearing from my wonderful readers and happy to help!!

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

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