Dorm life turns strangers to family

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Stepping into the doors of Allen Hall on Aug. 19, I had no idea what to expect. For the first time in my life I would be living alone. With no one to tell me to do my work or to come home, it was just me, myself and I.

This of course is 10 times more exciting than it is scary. Freedom is liberating, and getting so much at once makes adulthood feel real. In a few years I will have to worry about taxes, apartments and finding a job. The book of adolescence will officially be closed, if it isn’t already.

Every freshman battles with this reality when they first get to school. The end result is inevitable. After college we will be adults, plain and simple.

That’s part of why living in the dorms is so special freshman year. You are in a building, where, outside of a few exceptions, everyone is in the same boat. For one year, if not more, you get to live in a building where you are constantly surrounded by some of your best friends. Friends who teach you how to iron your clothes when you have your first job interview, or who share their ramen with you after your first trip to the magical place known as The Red Lion.

Living in the dorms, I’ve already discovered so much about myself. I have learned that when needed I can be a leader and that the major I’ve chosen is without a doubt for me — and I can’t imagine doing anything else. It’s such an amazing feeling, but nothing is better than seeing all of your friends and peers make these same discoveries. You may meet some who started in engineering, but realized they want to do cinema studies or dance, because that is their true calling. Or some who realized that college wasn’t right for them in the first place, and that they want to leave their mark in this world doing things their own way.

Every person you meet in the dorms is walking down a different path. Some choose to walk alone, and there is nothing wrong with that. An individual journey can often yield the greatest results. Others, however, know that walking down the long trail to adulthood isn’t one that can be taken alone. I am one of these people.

I know that I will continue this journey with many of the people I have met in the dorms.

I, personally, have met people who I know will forever be with me — in college and beyond. The best man in my wedding will, without a doubt, be my roommate, and the men in suits behind me will be my floor mates and neighbors.

I have met some of my best friends in the dorms, leading me to believe that without a doubt there is no better place to live as a freshman.

Drake is a freshman in Media. He can be reached at [email protected]