Each year at the end of the school year, I look back and think about the people in my life that made this year pleasant and kept me going against all odds. Being a college student can be one of the more stressful occupations one can have. Between classes, extracurriculars, job searches, a job, homework, sleep, a social life, and entertaining distractions, there’s a lot to deal with.
Personally, I am a junior in mathematics, an officer in three clubs, and a caterer for Sodexo; I’m certainly searching for a job after school (of course); I’m taking 16 credits, and I have a social life with plenty of distractions for me to worry about. I find that more important than anything, to help cope with the sheer amount of stuff that I have to deal with, is to have a couple of people around that I can talk to. In my case, one of these people is one of my roommates, whom I have known since freshman year. While I may annoy him at times, between waking him up to talk about Magic: the Gathering or random news in the middle of the afternoon after he’s stayed up until 10am, I still know that he’s got my back and will be around to talk if I need it. I’ve incredibly enjoyed even just having this friend’s company at random times throughout these three years. And yet, he’s leaving RPI this year for personal reasons.
Another person who was incredibly helpful in keeping me sane this year is one of my fellow club officers, who I also have pestered with random wake-up calls, but have at the same time had a great time talking to and hanging out with when I haven’t had too much work to do or have been feeling down. He has a lot of interest in Magic, as well and also has been especially helpful in moderating my interactions with people whom I wasn’t getting along with well throughout this year. Like my roommate, however, he is also leaving RPI. Though in his case, he’s graduating and getting a job halfway across the country.
So where does this leave me? I essentially have to go through the process I went through freshman year again, cementing new people around me as those whom I can trust to be there for me and those whom I can be there for when they need it. I’m not unaccustomed to this sort of sudden change; it happens, but it’s always somewhat unpleasant when it does. I know that if I just flounder and try to hold on to the past too much, I will feel miserable. Though I expect that I will be able to find someone. After all, there’s always been a bit of a disparity for me. I am a year ahead due to skipping a grade in elementary school, and I also was forced to adjust to being more mature than most of the people around me a lot earlier via some of the less tolerable people around me in high school, meaning that I can easily end up socializing farther out of my age group than most. While I can understand the reasoning behind mostly hanging out with people in one’s age group, I also feel that age should not be an obstacle for true friends.
Above all, I would like to deeply thank the people that have kept this year from being miserable for me; you know who you are. I hope I get the opportunity to meet up with all of you again, either here at RPI or some other time, and I hope that everyone here has the opportunity to have friends as good as you.