The 4 BEs – Joey Kleinsasser

Growing up in Jamestown, I never even thought about going to UJ for school. I wanted to go someplace that I would have endless opportunities, I would get the best education, and that would be my home-away-from-home. I was positive I would not get any of this in little Jamestown. I had no idea how wrong I would be.

When I toured UJ as a senior in high school, I had every intention of solely using it as an excuse to skip school for a day and see one of my friends who attended there. The second I stepped on campus, it felt very different than every other place I had visited; it felt like home. By the end of the tour, I had made my decision about enrolling, but I didn’t want to tell anyone, because I was embarrassed about going to college in my hometown.

Three years later, I couldn’t be prouder of being a Jimmie. This campus has given me so many opportunities, a wonderful education, professors who genuinely care about me, and the most genuine people I have ever met. UJ allowed me to not only get my degree, but to be in Concert Choir, Student Senate, and countless other committees and organizations. The opportunities given to me have been limitless—all because I decided to take a chance on the little school on the hill.

Through these three years, I have learned many lessons. Some of the big four include:

Be Intentional: Our actions and thoughts impact others around us. Do things for a reason.

Be Present: Enjoy your time here. It goes by so fast (I know this is very cliché, but it is true).

Be Genuine: Be unforgivingly you. You are unique and here for a reason. Let everyone see the real you.

Be Uncomfortable: College is such a weird but beautiful time. Embrace the uncertainty and the victories. As one of my favorite professors, Dr. Stotts, always says, “A little stress is good for you. It gets the dendrites going and makes new connections. That’s when you learn.”

Put yourself out there. Be unsure. Take risks. Some of the most uncomfortable times in my life have become some of my favorite memories.

Thank you, UJ, for the best time of my life. It really is true what they say: you find both yourself and your people in college.

I will be forever grateful to be a Jimmie. #honjims

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