I’ve been meaning to write for a few days, but I’ve had so much other stuff to write… such as help manuals, report descriptions, and release notes for my job. In fact, I wrote so much last week, my FarmVille crops ‘died’, my ‘Sorority Life’ house lost all of its fights, and my ‘Make a Baby’ went hungry (Poor Make a Baby. She has no baby daddy since my boyfriend refuses to download that application! And I even gave the child his last name).
Last Saturday, I spent the morning at my alma mater (that’s Francis Marion University, definitely not high school) helping freshmen move in their stuff. And believe me, even though we’re in a recession, Moms and Dads still had to take all the stuff that wouldn’t fit in the dorm room home.
I kinda like helping freshmen move in, even though I’m so busy with twittering/drinking free soda/conquering the evil documentation monster working all week. I like to give back to the university, because it really gave me so much. That day, the president of the university gave me quite possibly the best cup of Pepsi ever because he serves hot dogs and pepsi to the new freshmen, their families, and the volunteers. We really do have a big culture of service. How many college presidents do that?
I know giving back to my university seems like a cookie cutter reason for helping out (which is okay with me IF the cookie cutter is in the shape of a star), so I’ll put sprinkles on the cookies with the next part. First impressions are a big thing, and sometimes, you only get one shot (You learn this when you go on job interviews and don’t get those jobs). Regardless of how cocky and fearless college freshmen act, they’re nervous, scared, excited, and every other whirlwind of emotions.
So, why not give them a good impression? I know I’m not the biggest success story to come out of my university (far from it), but I’m 23, employed full time (in my field- a LIBERAL ARTS field), and living on my own. I’m still young enough for someone who’s 17-19 to talk to without feeling like they’re around an adult. It also helps that I’m really tiny and easily mistaken for a 15-year-old college student.
I like being involved as a young alum. It’s cool to talk to the new students and getting to know their names, majors, hometowns, and whatever else they want to tell. I’ll help them figure out how to open the dorm door, tell them where the laundry room is, or assure any liberal arts major that they CAN WILL be a successful, contributing, member of society. Someone had to be there for us when we were in their shoes, and someone has to be there for them.
My friend -a friend from college, btw, as I made many of my best friends there- twittered a quote that said “Service is the rent you pay for living” (Margaret Thorton). People won’t remember what you said or what you did, but they’ll remember how you make them feel, so roll out your welcome mat for all that you meet.
So…. *rolls out red carpet* welcome to the next four (or maybe more!) exciting years of your life. Enjoy it, because when it’s gone, it’s gone for good. You only get to live like a college student once, but if you live it up, once is enough.