By May, I would have lived in a non-all-freshman residence hall for one semester. Yes, by that time I lived in Onondaga for four semesters, Jones for three semesters, and Livingston for one semester. And you know what? I wouldn't have wanted it any other way.
Let's start at the beginning. I was told that going to college was not just for academics. Academics are extremely important, everyone said, but in addition I had to find "myself," join clubs, make a difference, and try new experiences…responsibly. With this in mind, if I disguised myself, went back in time and told myself that I would end up being a freshman RA, an orientation advisor, a tour guide, and a student orientation coordinator I would have said something like, "el-oh-el (or LOL) doubt it." My mom would have said, "Dom, listen to this nice, handsome young man. Challenge yourself!" Now, I could not be more thankful that I went outside my comfort zone and experienced these roles on campus.
Fast forward a little bit to spring 2009 and I saw a flyer about applying to be an OA Being an OA for about six weeks that summer was one of the most positively influential periods in my life. My confidence was boosted and I felt empowered to pursue other campus roles that work with incoming students; I found my niche at Geneseo.
It's now my senior year and the aforementioned positions reflect my passion that I am grateful to have discovered: helping those who are transitioning into college life.
As an RA in Onondaga, I am around constant excitement. I cannot walk through my floor without smiling (even if it is physically impossible for me to frown. Ask me and I'll prove it to you). As my residents learn from me, I am learning from them. Every year I absorb a new way to empathize, study, and communicate to name a few. Among other things, this year I've learned what "swag" means and how to use it properly (almost).
Although these roles have been a big portion of my college life, it's not everything. So why am I focusing on these out-of-class experiences? Where do my academics come into play? Cue Mean Girls, "She doesn't even go here!" My academics have always been important to me - I take them seriously - and I am also very passionate about my major. However, these other non-academic responsibilities have helped not only shape me to be a better person but a better student as well.
I hope that my future career has something to do with my major - geophysics - and student life; ultimately, a professorship would be ideal. I believe that all of the resources and skills I learned from these student leadership positions will translate successfully and professionally into any working environment I enter, including graduate school. What I've accomplished and involved myself in at Geneseo has been truly unique and exceedingly rewarding. I regret nothing.
Some families on tours ask me, "Knowing what you know now, would you still choose Geneseo." Before they even finish the word "knowing" I always say, "Yes!" And then I proceed to apologize for interrupting them.