By Jasmine Pipella
A clean slate. A blank canvas. A new beginning.
Every euphemism you can think of for four vacant, expansive – dare I say boundless – years that stretch back to the beginning of my journey here at UJ.
I was never completely sure of where I wanted to attend college, and I certainly never thought that small town, North Dakota would be the answer. However, before I knew it, I met Coach Gall, came for a visit on campus, and committed to playing softball at UJ – saying goodbye to all my friends and family back in Canada!
Jamestown soon became my new home. Jamestown is the place where I have developed into my interests and passions. Jamestown is the place where I have found friends and peers that inspire me and support me. I have grown into communities and values that ground me here, rooting me whenever I waver and pushing me forward whenever I need to borrow courage.
The transition into college and living on my own was much easier than expected thanks to my supportive family and the incredible people at UJ. My first year was mainly focused on softball and learning how to balance classes with all things a college sport entails. After an injury and many hours contemplating, I decided it was time to hang up my cleats and transition into keeping myself busy with a plethora of other organizations and activities – all of which have played a role in shaping who I have become over these past four years.
One of the best things that has resulted from my decision to attend UJ is the quality education I have received. I am so thankful for the chemistry department and all of the remarkable professors that have always gone the extra mile to help me succeed, while pushing me to be the very best student and person I could be, even outside the confines of the classroom.
UJ is outpacing me, graduation still over half a year away, but barreling towards me with the horizon of a whole new kind of independence. Just as I feared entering college and learning how to make my own decisions, I fear what it will mean to leave Jamestown and learn, once again, how to move forward on my own.
College has been the most predictably unpredictable time in my life – but I am forever grateful for it.
To all the amazing friends, professors, teammates, and friendly faces that I have crossed paths with over the last four years – Thank you!