The college process has been exactly that for me: a process. Ever since I began to get serious about college I decided that I wanted to move as far away from home as humanly possible. Whenever someone would ask me where I wanted to go to school, my answer was always “New York.” And I meant it. Up until my junior year I was determined to go to art school in the City. I had my short list of a variety to choose from. My junior year I was determined to get into NYU. To be fair, I didn’t realize I was incredibly prone to being homesick until this summer. It’s an unholy feeling. At some points this summer I was absolutely miserable and I was in my hometown . Once school started in August and college applications were readily approaching, I knew in the back of my mind that I couldn’t move that far from home. I don’t do well with change (don’t get me wrong, I’ve been looking forward to college since the 8th grade) so I knew that baby steps would be better than the alternative.
Needless to say, Anderson wasn’t even on my radar. A small, Christian, state school was the exact opposite of what I thought I wanted. I’ve been going to the same small, private, Christian school my entire life, so I figured I needed a change. But God’s plan for me was just the opposite. I planned to visit Anderson my junior year with a funny feeling in my stomach. I’m a firm believer in spiritual gifts and I believe mine is discernment. I can hear the Spirit loud and clear when He taps my shoulder. So I went on the visit. I fell in love.
The moment I stepped on campus, I could see myself there. It was (and is) incredibly gorgeous. The buildings were beautiful, the grounds looked like something out of a magazine. It just looked like a happy place. Once we arrived at the main entrance, I was greeted with waves of hospitality and positivity. Everyone welcomed me in with a smile and a “We’re so glad you’re here!” I must have been complimented on the jumpsuit I was wearing ten times. Of course, this is standard for any college visit, but this just felt so genuine and pure. I had never felt that way on a college tour before.
I’d never realized such an amazing place was so close to me. Just a short 2 1/2 drive away lies the school of my dreams. My whole goal in this whole process was just to end up in a place with like-minded people. Anderson was it for me. I always assumed a Christian college wouldn’t be for me. I didn’t want to feel any sort of restraint on my “college experience.” Little did I know, giving God the reigns set me free. When I’m there, there is such a peace and sense of contentment that can only be described as submission to God’s will for my life. I visited with my soon-to-be roommate, Katie, over Christmas break when there weren’t even any students and I still felt the same waves of happy I did when the grounds were populated. I see myself growing not only academically, but spiritually. I am so excited for what God has in store for me in this new chapter.