As a resident adviser, I feel like my girls are my chicks and that I am the mother hen. It has truly been a pleasure watching them get plugged into the Vanderbilt community.
During late January and early February, I had the pleasure of getting lunch, dinner or coffee with each of my residents. Talking to them has helped me to remember what life’s struggles were back then. I was also proud of them for adjusting to their college life.
A few issues came up during these conversations:
1. Waitlisted at Vanderbilt? A few people I’ve talked to, who were waitlisted at Vandy, seemed to feel that they weren’t leaders and weren’t “competitive” enough to be an asset to a student organization. I cleared up that myth by reminding them what a SLIM margin it is between an admitted student and someone who is put on the waitlist. I encouraged them to join clubs they were interested in and to believe in themselves! Being waitlisted doesn’t mean you are second-rate or second-best, it is just an indicator of the number of spots at the Commons (first-year living area).
2. Time flies fast! – YES IT DOES! Speaking from the perspective of a rising senior – time does fly fast. I told my residents to enjoy their time while they had it. I believe that sophomore year is the perfect year to experiment with organizations and classes at Vanderbilt. You’ve already got a grip of the school from freshman year, and it’s right before junior year when you feel pressured to make big life decisions.
3. Life can be hard; this is true. However, trials are what makes us who we are! We are shaped by the tough decisions or results in our lives and divert us one way or the other. We all face disappointments, but one has to believe that there are greater things out there and that everything happens for a reason. Your friends and family are your biggest support when things go wrong!
I’ve been so blessed this year to have such great residents – girls who care about each other and who respect the hall. I’ve learned so much as an upperclassman, and I hope that I’ve helped them to learn that Vanderbilt is what you make of it – I’m living proof!