An Ode to SHU

In just one week, graduation day will be here, and the senior class will have to say goodbye to the place we’ve created our own little home at for the past four years.

Four years ago, I was moving in early to Roncalli to start freshman year band camp. I was scared and excited about everything, as most freshmen are. I was scared to have to move in an entire week early because that meant a week alone in my room, my floor, and sometimes it felt like the whole building. I was scared because I didn’t know what to expect. Now, four years later, I am having those similar scared and excited feelings, except this time they’re at the thought of graduating and not being completely sure what to do after graduation day is over.

First, let’s say thank you to the band program for giving me my biggest and sometimes most stressful time commitment. There were times when I wanted to quit and never come back, but I decided I liked being in a band and making music with other people too much to do that. While it was stressful at times, I do want to say thank you to the band for giving me some of my closest friends and best memories I wouldn’t have been able to get if I was not participating in the band. Being able to go and perform in Disney and Ireland are top on the list of memorable moments the band program has helped provide me.

The people in the band helped me feel confident enough in myself to switch from the instrument I had been playing for 11 years to something completely different. I went from playing the basic clarinet all the time to playing in the front ensemble for marching band. I couldn’t have done it without the help from some of the people in the band program who pushed and challenged me to do something different.

I was able to learn how to step out of my comfort zone and do things I never thought I would have done before. The program has helped me to gain different kinds of leadership abilities, while finding a sense of community. I am grateful for the band program, no matter how many stressful and irritating moments came with it, and I don’t regret joining at all. I have been making music and playing in a band for 13 years now, and I would have regretted not continuing throughout my college education.

Four years of school, band and so many other extracurricular activities, just in college alone, and it’s all coming to an end. I am excited because graduation day is supposed to be fun and exciting, but also nervous because all of a sudden I am done. Going to school and getting an education consistently every year since I entered kindergarten when I was four, and now it’s over. Each educational stage has come with its own new experiences, so this new post-education experience will be something I have never done before, and I will tackle it when it comes.

So thank you to the Sacred Heart Band Program, Campus Ministry, the English and Catholic Studies Departments and the Spectrum, for giving me the courage to step outside of my comfort zone and find my voice.

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