Where my junior year was mainly filled with tumultuous events, my senior year was the first time I truly found my footing academically and personally. I started the year with a haircut and a new attitude that helped me accomplish most of my scholastic goals and landed me a spot on the Dean’s list(!!!!) for the first time ever. I still kept the same messed up sleeping schedule (all-nighters were a regular occurrence and I’ve never seen so many sunrises?) and procrastinated on my essays when I said I would start them early, but it appears that my greatest school accomplishments always come from the work I finish in the wee hours of the morning. It’s not my fault I pen my best writings when I’m half asleep! My first semester of senior year saw my favorite classes I’ve ever taken at Baylor (minus one I took in the spring): Creative Writing Poetry, Creative Writing Prose, Criminology, Sociology of Race and Ethnicity, and Poverty in Waco (we’re not counting Brit Lit in my list because I hated that one) and the first semester I’d ever earned above a 3.5! I got a 3.73 GPA and died inside my body when I secured a place on the Dean’s list. Who would have thought I could do that? I wrote almost a dozen poems in class and outside and I discovered my voice through each piece. Thankfully, I had an incredible and accomplished poet in Dr. Chloe Honum as my professor and mentor. Although my second semester of senior year wasn’t full of courses that I loved (English Literature of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century, Shakespeare Selected Plays, American Realism & Naturalism, Topics in Creative Writing), I still had one wonderful class in the form of Writing for Social Change, aced every single essay I wrote, and finished with a 3.68!
I still spent the majority of my time working in Athletics Communications at all of the football, basketball, soccer, and tennis events where I continued to enjoy sports from behind the scenes. Working in athletics has been the highlight of my time in college and I would never trade my experiences in the department for anything. Even when I’ve grown frustrated with leadership or other students’ dysfunction, I still loved working at all of the events and contributing to the success of the sports. Along with working in athletics, I volunteered three times a week from the start of my senior year until I graduated at Talitha Koum– a therapeutic daycare center for children who live in low income areas of Waco. I used to despise children (I still do most of the time), but working at HBA and coaching the Roosevelt boys over the summer made me want to volunteer with the babies at TK whom I grew to adore. Going to TK every week was such a joy and spending time with the babies softened my cold dead heart to actually love some children. I thoroughly enjoyed watching them quickly grow (who knew babies age like the speed of light? Like damn Larry, weren’t you just crawling yesterday? Who taught you how to run?) and age into the next class.
Not only did I make the best grades of my college career during my senior semesters, but I also spent quality time with numerous friends with whom I became closer over the years. Friends like Jonathan, Lo, Stephanie, Krista, and Leah are always the ones I turn to and spend my days with, but I also did my best to have more dinners and catch ups with Wilson, Jazzi, Theresa, and Brandon. This year I learned how to balance my time between school, work, volunteering, blogging, and spending time with friends in a healthier way that allowed me to go out more and be present with the people I love. I’ve made great memories with these people over the past year that I wouldn’t trade for any extra days of studying I could have chosen instead. I know my choices to go out more and be more social were of more value than any all-nighters and I’ll cherish those moments forever.