A Note to Allies, Trailblazers

I think I’m supposed to be telling you something nostalgic and sentimental this issue, so here’s to meeting expectations, both yours and mine, and getting mushy.

I will be finishing college in just three academic years. I am not telling you this to sound exceptional because it’s totally feasible. I fully believe you can do it if you set your mind to it, continue on an efficient path, and have the desire to complete college in this speed. I say it because I think part of me is still in disbelief that I’m finishing school this May.

I remember going into college in September 2012, thinking I would probably have to stay five years. I thought I would be going into the theatre program here, but I continued with communication and am so pleased with what’s come of my overall experience.

Remembering joining the Pointer elicits feelings I cannot put into the best words I’d like to communicate because the profound impact it has had on my college experience, more like my life experience as a whole, has been exceptional.

Upon arriving at the university that September, I didn’t know who I would be or what I would do. I had an idea, but I’m not that person. I don’t remember who I wanted or expected that person to be. CropSquare

I’m me, and I’m graduating the same way I came to college: not knowing where I’ll end up or what life will bring. To me, that’s exciting; that’s what it’s all about. I’ve always been one for a challenge in academia and work. Maybe that’s why I’ve ultimately decided to relocate to New Jersey for a job in fashion.

I will be creating social media accounts and a blog for two sister companies, Veond LLC and ELIETIAN. I am excited to be near Manhattan and to help these brands grow using what I’ve learned from the programs here and from working for organizations like the Pointer and SPTV. I foresee great potential, and I hope my inklings are correct.

I don’t think anything is certain. We can’t predict the future, though we might try. We must live in the present. You’ll be told this oodles and oodles of times in your life, and if people aren’t telling you yet, make them start, or start telling yourself. Don’t just try to live presently; do it. Look your life in the eyes and tell it “I’m here, I’m now and this is me.” Be a friend to your own experience, whatever that means.

I urge you, graduating or not, to do the things you want. It’s your life. College has taught me a lot. Managing type 1 diabetes, creating MissTrendShe.com, joining the Pointer, working for campus media, and on and on, has been a collective of personality, experience and work. It’s been me, and from here on out, I’ll be exploring me in a new way.

I hope, whatever the summer brings, you can explore new parts of yourself too, and if you ever need help, I’m always open to networking. Seriously, don’t hesitate to reach out.

Also, to visiting potential students or to incoming freshman picking up the Pointer for the first time, don’t believe admissions counselors who tell you the saying “Have a Schmeeckle Day” is a thing. It isn’t. I think they’re telling you with the best intentions to start an affirming trend, but in the past three years of being here I haven’t heard anyone say it, so I’m just offering a fair warning to you.

I truly feel life should be about helping others and supporting one other, regardless of the path you’re pursuing. They say Pointers are trailblazers, and as a soon-to-be alumna, I hope to build upon this legacy of the university’s alumni and say I’m going to be an ally to you, too.

Whoever you are, I’m rooting for you. You can do it, whatever it is, whatever you want it to be. Thanks for everything- for your readership, for your support, for your teachings and for your kindness. I will never forget this part of my life. I can’t believe I’m about to say goodbye, and it is a good goodbye.

 

Arts & Entertainment Editor

Julia Flaherty

jflah017@uwsp.edu

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