by: Nick Alexander
As a member of the class of 2010, I am just now realizing what all graduates realize at some point in their lives; the year that you graduate is not always off in the distant future and in fact, it comes sooner than you may think. I have been so comforted and deceived by things such as Microsoft Office 2007 and my 2002 Ford Focus that I did not notice the New Year 2010 creep up on us. I also did not notice the New Year because I was busy taking care of someone who celebrated a little too much just before the ball dropped… but that’s a different story.
I took this (last ever) Winter Break to reflect on the things I have done over the last few years at William and Mary. I won’t bore you with those, but I will say that I found I was thankful for different things than I had expected. Coming in as a Freshman I knew I was going to get a great education. That’s why I (and most others) chose William and Mary. But I did not realize that I would meet the greatest people in the world. And I certainly did not think that I would keep meeting them year after year. Even as a Senior, I am still meeting amazing people at William and Mary and I absolutely love it. The time we have in college is short and you have to make the most of it. I have one semester left to ensure that I have the best undergraduate experience ever… and I am well on my way.
Without sounding too preachy, I would like to give you a few pieces of advice that helped make my William and Mary experience so fantastic. First, NEVER pass up ANY opportunity. If your professor wants you to be her TA, if your friend wants you to help him break the record for having the most people do the Thriller dance, or if you have the chance to camp outside Buffalo Wild Wings the night before their grand opening to win a year supply of wings… DO IT! Second, the glass is never half empty nor is it half full. There is sooo much in the glass. Think about it. And third, remember that old cliché: no door closes without a new one opening. Friendships may wither, grades may struggle, relationships may sour, and you may get bumped from campus housing and be forced to find an apartment with a bunch of people you don’t know, but these are ALL opportunities to meet new people, try new things, and discover more about yourself.
William and Mary and Kappa Delta Rho have contributed so much to the man I am today. The thought of having one semester left is a little sad especially when I talk to people who have seven more semesters. But then I realize that there are so many opportunities in front of me. However, instead of going back to those three pieces of advice, I’ll just give you a really bad metaphor about my most recent years: High school was like walking down the hallway in my house. There weren’t many directions to go so I strolled on through to the end (sometimes bumping into the wall but always getting back on track). College is the living room in my house. I have people over, watch TV, read, and run around and do stupid things. But the front door is slowly opening and as I peek outside, I see there are no walls. Sometimes it’s bright and sunny and sometimes it’s dark and stormy. That is where I (and the class of 2010) will be in about five months. It's almost time to go outside. A William and Mary alum said it best when I expressed sadness for entering my last semester in the greatest place on Earth: “While saying goodbye to W&M is indeed bittersweet, you are about to begin the life you've been preparing for...so enjoy that last semester and get excited about what lies ahead!” And that is exactly what I will do.