By Jessie Garrison
Head Copy Editor
Associate Opinion Editor
As we enter the Fall 2019 semester, it feels a little different for me as I am not living in a dorm or an apartment in Millersville. I am back home in Exton, Pennsylvania with my dad and my cat. My sister graduated from PSU last May and moved down to South Carolina, so it’s just me. I am doing this because I have a thesis and an online class left to complete my degree, I couldn’t justify paying for rent or the dorms.
The past three and a half years at Millersville University has been quite the whirlwind of events. While at Millersville, I have made amazing friends, joined an amazing organization (The Snapper), had professors who unconditionally want me to succeed, and at the end I will also have a degree in Writing Studies.
Have all of my experiences in the past three and a half years been positive? No.
When I first came to MU I was in an abusive relationship which ended in a disaster. I had to quickly learn about the resources MU offered, like Title IX. I also have struggled with depression and anxiety since I was a young kid. I never imagined how that would impact my success at MU. While the counseling services are great, the counselors are overscheduled and there was no way 8 sessions a semester benefitted me.
…of my hours were spent in my professors’ office hours as they handed me tissues because I was crying. Yes, I cried countless times in my professors’ office hours that it has become a joke between my friends. I have had to sit in their office and tell them about the abusive relationship, the depression, the other trauma that I have endured, all while hoping they don’t look at me differently.
Why am I choosing to tell this story, so publicly, as my senior reflection?
I am choosing to tell my story because my professors never looked at me differently. They listened, they cared, they even checked in on me. To my surprise, some of them even opened up to me about their own struggles with mental health, whether themselves or a loved one.
While I am graduating with a degree, I am also graduating with something priceless. When I leave MU I know that I have done everything I can to be the best me I can be. My college stories will never start with, “When I was at a party” or, “I joined the sorority because…” My college stories will begin with at first I never thought I would succeed, make it, or stay alive at times through college but with the support from my amazing friends, professors, and my own strength I have done it.”