Sarah Lilley '19 describes the most exciting moments of fall semester.
My junior year has been a time for me to reflect on my college experiences and how much I have grown since I first stepped on campus. While the University of South Carolina has given me many reasons to be grateful this holiday season, I have narrowed down my reasons to seven.
1. South Carolina Pride
When I took my campus tour, the first thing I noticed was the sense of pride carried by all of the students, faculty and staff. Everyone on campus was wearing garnet and black. Students were genuinely happy, and it was contagious! From the time I stepped foot on campus to now, I have felt that same joy.
2. The School of Journalism and Mass Communications
Going back to my campus tour, I walked into the School of Journalism and Mass Communications, affectionately known as the J-School, and my jaw dropped. It was beautiful! The J-school has proved itself more valuable since then. I’m excited to go to my classes and learn from professors who have extensive experience in the field that I hope to pursue. Because of the college, I have been able to gain mentors and internships, join the Public Relations Student Society of America, record a podcast and network with other professionals in the field.
3. My Mentors
UofSC has given me access to amazing mentors. I cannot thank them enough for their time and energy invested into my success. The J-School has a program called Mentor Match, which connected me with an alumnus who graduated with my major. He provides great insight to interviewing and job searching. I always feel empowered after our video chats. My supervisor at my internship has also become an amazing mentor and exemplifies the leader I want to be. Building these relationships has been such an integral part of my college career. I will always be grateful for them and hope to always have them in my life.
4. My On-Campus Internship
To put it simply, my on-campus internship has allowed me to become best friends with my favorite mascot, Cocky, and gain professional experience. Interning with the Office of Undergraduate Admissions has opened so many doors, and taught me how much time and strategy goes into everything you see online. While I know my time at South Carolina won’t last forever, I know I will leave with the necessary skills to succeed.
I truly believe college is when you meet your best friends, and I have certainly met my mine. Whether it’s going to the local farmers market, football games or late-night donut runs, my friends and I always find something to do. I know we are there for each other in both great and stressful times. I am so grateful for the friendships I have made at South Carolina.
6. Greek Life
I went through formal recruitment my freshman year, excited and ready to meet my “future bridesmaids.” Joining my sorority proves its worth daily. I met my first friend, and my favorite function date, through recruitment and we’re still best friends. Whenever I walk into my sorority house, I know I can see my best friends and also meet sisters I haven’t chatted with before. I’m thankful for Greek Life because it has led me to new experiences and amazing friends.
7. The Weather
As a native Atlantan, I knew I needed to go to college in a place that is warm the majority of the year. Warm weather means more time on the Horseshoe, which in my opinion, is the best spot on campus for anything and everything. South Carolina has a very long summer, so most of my winter clothes can stay at home. It starts to get warm in March and stays warm until the beginning of November.
South Carolina has become my home away from home, and I hope it becomes yours too!
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