As I sat around a bonfire with my friends a few weeks ago, we talked about how it’s crazy that it feels like we just started college a few years ago – and now, we are preparing to graduate. I found myself getting a bit emotional – that’s when it hit me that I’m graduating and leaving UIC. Saying goodbye isn’t easy. Especially when you’re leaving a school that has been the biggest part of your life for the past four years.
When I decided to go to UIC, I knew that whatever I experienced at the college would leave an everlasting mark on me. And I have absolutely no regrets of attending UIC – the school has blessed me with so many opportunities, education, and skills that have prepared me to be the 22-year-old graduating senior I am today.
Let’s be honest – classes were not a summer breeze. I can recall many sleepless nights during my first two years where I would sit at a computer screen with piles of books, trying to figure out the best next sentence of a paper. I can recall the long school days where I felt like a zombie hyped up on coffee. Endless papers, tests, and projects were bountiful. I also recall getting a hang of task management during my last two years here. I felt like a college-pro, being able to manage everything and anything. Now when I reflect on all the readings I read, the papers I wrote, and the exams I studied for, I understand why I did all that stuff. It was to make me smart – to instill in me the world-class education that UIC promised. Whenever I am working on new assignments at school or at my internship, I find myself going back and memorizing the things I have learned in my classes. I received a world-class education from UIC.
UIC also gave me leadership skills and a better awareness of myself through my involvement in student organizations. In particular, the UIC Undergraduate Student Government had the most impact on my personal development. After joining my first week as an undergraduate in August 2010, I have been dedicated and passionate for the organization. I wanted to genuinely raise awareness about the group and provide the most effective student government possible for the undergraduate student body. I had many positions that entailed me learning how be a leader: Chair of the previous Internal Affairs Committee, Vice-President for two years, and the Chair of the Communications & Recruitment Committee. I was also able to attend three conferences in Washington, D.C., including the Clinton Global Initiative University conference. I was also able to meet face-to-face with university administrators to develop new, beneficial plans for students. I organized several major events, including my favorite, the Undie Run. Through all of my experiences in the organization, I developed a unique, passionate love for the university. One that will make a dedicated alumni.
I truly am going to miss being a student here. But as I welcome full-fledged adulthood, I will never forget the experiences UIC has given me. And I would like to thank every single one of my I AM UIC blog readers for welcoming me and listening to me for the past two years. I will miss you all!
Until next time…