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The Power of Professors

I’m finding my final year in college to be bittersweet – exciting and terrifying. Looking back on my years here, I can’t capture into words all that I have gained and become. College is transformative and lasting. My time here will never be forgotten, and I will always look back at parts with love.

As a final blog, I want to talk about one of the most important pieces of my time here. My mentors, my advisors, my role models – my professors.

As a student who came in with a strong idea of what I wanted to do, it was shocking how quickly I shed that notion. But then without it, where was I going to go? What was I supposed to do without my idea of the future to hold my hand?

The god’s honest truth is I still have no idea. I don’t know what next year will bring. I don’t even know what next semester will bring. I’ve almost (not quite) come to accept that I’ll probably never know what the future holds for me. Not with certainty, at least.

What I do know is that it will be fine. I will be fine. I know that, not because my professors here have told me, but because they have built me up to be someone who knows myself. They have built me up to be someone who is capable, strong, and powerful. Someone with a voice and someone willing to act when action is due. This hasn’t just happened through classes in my POE, or with only a handful of professors. It has been slow, organic, and expansive.

I have been built up by Dr. Neil Pelkey. He has always encouraging me in my writing, and has always read pieces that I send to him, even when they are not quite what he might have been expecting. I have been solidified in who I am by Dr. Donna Weimer, who tells me to never doubt my voice. I have become the person I am today through my classes and discussions with Dr. Alison Fletcher, Dr. Chuck Yohn, Dr. Polly Walker, Dr. Uma Ramakrishnan, Dr. Norris Muth… The list can go on because each and every professor I have interacted with here has given me something different, something wonderful.

Even when I have hated classes, disliked teaching styles, and disagreed, I have felt supported and encouraged by our faculty as a student here.

You can say a lot about the college admissions process. I remember it. It feels like all colleges promise you something shiny and new, and it’s terrifying. You’re making a major decision that will impact your life immensely. That’s not something to take lightly. Investigate, visit the campus, talk to students, do your research. I cannot tell you if this is your school. Only you can decide that.

What I do know for myself, and what I can say is that I would not be the same person I am today if I had not gone here. That fact is thanks to the faculty, staff, and students here. They have cared for me, they have advised me, they have let me cry when tears were what I needed. There are no words I can express that will fully capture the gratitude I feel for those three groups of people here. But with my very last blog here, I thought I might try.

Enjoy your college search. Be inquisitive, ask questions, assert yourselves. You’ll know the right choice when the time comes.