I know what you’re thinking. It’s January. It is far too early to start reminiscing about my 4 years at SMU. But you’re wrong. It’s never too early for nostalgia. So I bring you two lists: the top 5 things I will miss about SMU and the top 5 things I won’t.
Top 5 things I won’t miss:
- Living with freshman. I have never lived outside of a freshman dorm. Having lived in Perkins as a freshman and serving as a RA in Boaz for the past three years, I have grown tired of watching freshman make the same mistakes over and OVER. I have cleaned up puke from hallways, snowmen from elevators, asian stir-fry off of doors, and blood out of carpets. Needless to say, I am very excited to move off campus and live in either a house or apartment. I cannot wait until the day I can walk into my home and not feel like I’m being watched, avoided, or being asked to let someone into their room. SO EXCITED.
- Walking to class in the rain. Upon graduation, I will never have to walk outside in the rain for more than 5 minutes max per day. This 5 minutes will consist of me walking from my front door to my car, parking lot to work, church, restaurant, meeting, etc. I will no longer joke about wearing (and at times, even consider wearing) a bathing suit to class or ponder as to how its possible for my rain boots to fill with water. After college, with the exception of extreme situations, if I am standing in the rain it will be by choice, not by necessity.
- Getting grades. This requires no explanation.
- 5 a.m. fire drills. As an RA and having lived on campus all four years, I have done at least six fire drills (and maybe a few more depending on if my residence hall failed or not). Sometimes in the freezing cold. My freshman and sophomore year, the fire marshall would keep us out their FOREVER so he could probably explain the importance of getting the flu shot (Why the fire marshall was the one to tell us this, I have no idea…). This past year we’ve gotten a new fire marshall who is awesome, blunt, and boring. HOWEVER, he knows how to get a fire drill done and done fast. Thank you Fire Marshall Man!
- E-mails from Patrick Hite. No Patrick, I do not want a flu shot. I know when Brown Bag is and I can’t go due to class. I have no interest in going to a seminar on the principles of marriage, the evolution of egyptian music, an exposition of underwater basket weaving, or the unveiling of yet another fountain but thanks.
Things I will miss:
- Learning. I am a learner. For those of you who remember when SMU made us all take Strengths Quest (which I loved by the way), “Learner” and “Achiever” were two of my top 5 strengths. So I’m not going to lie, I am going to miss going to class. I have taken some really cool classes over the past four years and have had some pretty awesome professors. I’m taking Intro to Jazz Dance right now (and its kicking my butt by the way. Super fun but definitely a work-out!) and, though a random elective and a good grade buffer, I’ve realized that there are still a bunch of classes at SMU that I want to take! I never got to take that Holocaust class I’ve wanted to take. And what about Voice Class, or Good Eats, or the Improv Theater Class, or Urban Economics, or Public Finance? I would love to take another history class from the phenomenal history department SMU has. Make sure to take a class by Professor Hopkins, Adams, or Countryman before you graduate. These professors and their classes have been some of my favorites. Professor Hopkins’ class was by far the best class I have ever taken at SMU. Now, as a senior, when I look at my schedule I don’t just see an easy blow-off semester (which it is), I see my last opportunities to reap the benefit of a university education (I don’t plan on getting my masters, by the way). So take advantage of the course offerings and take something that is out of your comfort zone. You won’t regret it.
- Umph, Mac’s Place, and the people who work there. I don’t care what anyone says. The food at Umph is awesome a majority of the time. Have you ever eaten at other universities? The food sucks. Believe me. Once you’ve tried the food at Austin College in Sherman, you will kiss the floor of Umphrey Lee. The ease and simplicity of swiping in and picking whatever you want is going to be hard to let go. In less than 5 months, I will have to buy groceries… and if you know me at all you will know that I have a very expensive palate. Veggies, salmon, fresh fruit, and crazy awesome desserts do not come cheap. And I refuse to live off of the Ramen noodle diet (side note: take the dry ramen noodles and crumble them on top of a salad for crunchy goodness!). As much as I like to cook, I know that somedays I won’t feel like it. At Mac’s and Umph, you can just walk in and grab warm food. Not to mention the fact that the lunch ladies and lunch gentlemen (?) are extremely friendly and accommodating. They all know my name and always ask me about my day, classes, etc. For all of my fellow seniors (and perhaps some juniors), we all associate Almeta and the Cookie Lady with fond memories and widened waistlines. The staff at Umph and Mac’s Place are awesome. Tell them so next time you are there.
- Free gym membership. Do you know how expensive it is to join a gym? Its not cheap. Now, I know what you are thinking, Dedman Rec is paid for by our student fees included in our tuition. But its still included. There is no extra cost. No, tuition + gym. Just tuition.
- Getting student discounts. No more student tickets at the movies. No more 10% off at La Madeleine’s. No more reduced price DART passes, Six Flags Tickets, free movie premieres on campus, student-only content at the Cox Business Library, or discounts on car insurance. No more flex or pony to spend at Subway, Chik-fil-a, and Pizza Hut. Life is about to get way more expensive.
- The Community. I no longer refer to McKinney, TX as home. SMU is my home. I am going to miss being able to walk down the boulevard and know 75% of everyone I see. I’m going to miss chatting with Dr. White when we cross paths at the gym, Dr. Howard when we run into each other in Hughes-Trigg, or having tea at Professor Adam’s house on Thursdays. I’m going to miss leading the Mustang Mavericks and watching people with no dance skills learn how to two-step and stunt like crazy. I’m going to miss my RA staff and all the RAs on campus. I never thought I’d say this, but I am going to miss RA training. I’m going to miss seeing my friends everyday, the Perkins 2nd floor gang, etc. After graduation, everyone moves away, back home, to new jobs and new lives. Its going to take more effort to keep in contact with everyone. As much as I complain about the rising tuition prices, administration errors, stupid policies,and bad professors, SMU created a community of stability and support. Its this community that I will miss the most.
Mustang. Pony. Blast.