The Beginning of the End (Senior Year Edition)
This will be my last first post of the term! As a senior, especially during times of COVID-19, there is a lot of uncertainty in my life and those of my friends. What will we be doing next year? Where will we be? What will our lives look like? It's hard to focus when those thoughts are swimming around in your head, but we have all tried our best to focus on the present.
I was looking forward to senior spring the most out of any term this year because finally, almost all of my friends are back on-campus. It has been so nice catching up with them (socially distanced) and trying to take advantage of our last term in the Hanover area and on Dartmouth's campus, beautiful places to be in the spring.
What have I been up to, you might ask? The end of the quarantine period meant returns to the Green, one of the hubs of campus activity even pre-COVID. The weather has been kind to us lately, and I have frequently met up with friends to grab lunch or dinner, study, or just relax sitting with all the buildings that make up Dartmouth surrounding us.
One of the good things to come out of this past year is that it has made me much more grateful about what I do have, and the precious time left at Dartmouth. It's going to be hard to have to leave my friends and this town in New Hampshire that I tentatively called my home freshman year, but can now say it with conviction.
I came into Dartmouth very excited and focused, mostly on academics. I signed up for difficult classes, overloaded my schedule, and learned as much as I can. I don't regret doing so, as I was able to take advantage of all the opportunities that Dartmouth has to offer - the research, professors to build strong relationships with, resources, etc. But, it's interesting how, in my later years, I have grown to love Dartmouth for different reasons.
My friends and I sit outside Collis, eating dinner by the fire pits, waving occasionally to our acquaintances and friends who walk by (doing so several times due to the small student body size). I try to get some videos for my math class in while the shouts of a spike ball game happen a few feet away. My friends tell me excitedly about their theses on the influenzas of the 18th century and group mentality/discrimination in the context of foreign aid and intervention. I pick up some free bubble tea, provided by the Dartmouth Asian Organization, as a welcome to the spring term.
It's these moments that remind me of what makes Dartmouth truly special, and these moments that I will miss the most, starting in nine or so weeks once I graduate. Sure, the academics and intellectual rigor are what drew me to Dartmouth in the first place, and exceeded my expectations, but the community and growth I experienced in my four years make it all the more worth it.