Letter to the Editor: School is more than just a degree

By: Kwynn Townsend Riley – Sophomore, Communication

For 2014, my resolution is to get a life, not just a degree.

I am not just paying 51,040 dollars for a piece of paper from this institution. I am paying this money to invest in myself and my life.

College has been, so far, the most beautiful challenge that I have ever experienced. It has not been a challenge because of the courses, battling time management, or trying not to overdose on Bosco Sticks. The most beautiful challenge is discovering myself.

I met myself for the first time in Dayton. I am getting to know what I like, dislike, and what I can and cannot do.

Meeting someone for the first time after 18 years, is slightly awkward, but I got the hang of it. A degree is just a piece of paper compared to the memorable, priceless moments and experiences that I can have in my four years at the University of Dayton.

I learned that the most beautiful thing about mistakes is the lessons and that everything truly happens for a reason.
Changing your major is not a bad thing and neither is dropping a class because you do not like it.

If you don’t work out all the time, it’s fine. If you decided to stay up all night and argue with friends over Ryan Gosling versus Leonardo DiCaprio instead of studying for finals, that’s fine too.

Even if you dream more than you sleep, as long as you are living your life, it’s fine. This is your degree, your life at UD. Make it count. Do what your heart desires. Even if that means no one else is doing it with you. It is about doing what makes you happy.

Luckily, I attend a school with students who feel the same way I do: students who stay up just for the free food during finals week, students who have snowball fights at three in the morning, students who will protest for Coke products over Pepsi products, students who I am lucky to call my community.

At first, I didn’t understand. Why would students choose to do these things instead of studying? It didn’t make sense to lie in the grass just because it was a nice day, but it hit me.

My opinion on life is to live it up. Seniors are graduating, while first years are just beginning, and us sophomores are right in that awkward stage of adulthood and are still calling our mothers when our meal plans are out.

The time is now people. Make every day count. Before you know it, you’re graduating, so do you really want your only memories from UD to be in the library?

College is not called the best years of your life because of the junk food, late nights or free meals. College is when you pick up your pen and start writing it. I am living and enjoying every moment of it.

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