“What year are you in?” is a typical question asked of any college student across the country. This year when the words, “I’m a senior,” escape from my lips, a wide variety of emotions arise within me. First, there is a level of upperclassman pride that I deserve the title of senior after all of the countless hours of hard work I have put in over the last three years. Next, comes a slight hint of disbelief that I actually made it this far in my educational career. Finally, there is a bittersweet mixture of overflowing joy because of how much I have loved my experience at Franciscan accompanied by a deep sadness at the knowledge that with each passing day I am one step closer to leaving this place that I have come to call my home.
I had the privilege of kicking off my senior year by serving on Orientation Team. In a nutshell, upperclassman volunteer to cut their summer vacation short by one week to come back and plan, organize and execute all of the events that occur during Orientation Week. The newest members of the Franciscan family exhibited the typical qualities of any college freshman: wide-eyed excitement, nervousness and fear of what’s to come. However, our freshmen are different. They are on fire with a passion to love, serve and know the Lord in whatever way, shape or form that may mean.
Franciscan University students are a rare breed. We don’t come here to simply receive a degree. We come here to receive a crash course in sainthood. This campus is more than textbooks and classrooms; it is the welcoming home of a family who will love us, inspire us and transform us so that when we walk across that stage at graduation, we will be ready to go forth and change the world.
How will I be inspired? How will I be transformed? Those questions will linger in each and every endeavor I pursue as my last year at Franciscan begins to unfold.
It is such a huge blessing to attend Franciscan University where the study abroad program has become commonplace among the student body. I would say roughly 85% of the people I know have gone to or are planning to go to Austria. Sometimes I forget how awesome and rare of an opportunity that is. Most other schools do not have a program like ours.