Thoughts from the Class of 2004

Sometimes things in life don’t occur the way you expect them to.That’s why you learn to expect the unexpected, and make everymoment worthwhile.

I came to St. John’s in the fall of 2000, with my heart set onattending SUNY Albany. And while my best friend could not stopbeing excited about our first day on campus, I kept dreading thethought of being here. But I’m the type of person who’ll giveeverything a chance, so I figured, “Let’s see how the firstsemester goes. I can always transfer in the spring.”

To my surprise, the first semester at St. John’s turned out tobe great. Through friends, who were also SJU alumni, I found outabout Campus Ministry and the “Twins,” Paula and Tori Migliore.They were the first to make me feel like I already belonged. Whenwe met, all I did was mention that so-and-so told me to seek themout, and Paula (or was it Tori? I don’t remember which of the”Twins” I met first) screamed with excitement and gave me a hugehug for a hello.

Throughout high school, we were encouraged to participate incommunity service. Our Ephebic Oath began with the words, “I shallnever bring disgrace to my city…” and ended with, “I shall notleave my city any less but rather greater than I found it.” We weretaught to take the first step, and to always remember that oneperson makes a difference. And event though this was my first yearas a college student, I carried that oath over to SJU with me.

I mentioned earlier that my first semester was great. Why? I gotinvolved! Through my participation in programs such as AllianceMentoring, going on retreats and becoming a member of the St.Vincent de Paul Society, all sponsored, ran or supported by CampusMinistry, I had the chance to influence others and to meet awesomepeople who influenced and inspired me.

That first semester, the semester I kept dreading and wishingwould never start, the one I swore would turn out lousy, in acollege I told myself I’d never like…well that first semester wasunexpected.

As I think about the next four months before graduation, thefact that my four years here, in a college I grew to love and callhome (even though I’m not a resident student, but enjoy my commutefrom Williamsburg, Brooklyn) are up, I feel sad and frightened. Noplace and no one can prepare you for the next step ahead. You neverknow what’s waiting for you around the corner. I do know thateverything and everyone has its glamour and its faults. And I doknow that in order to get through life you have to accept both thefaults and the glamour because these things you cannot change. Andyou need to have courage to take the risk, to fall flat on yourface, to crumble but to get back up, brush it off and move onbecause (I’ve read this once somewhere, though I can’t seem torecall where) “Great love and great accomplishments require greatrisk!”