Well, where to start? This has been an amazing experience. I have no idea how I got to this point already. I am not ready for this to be over. It feels like we have only been here for a few days, not a few weeks! I have developed such strong bonds with many people here. I don’t want to forget a single moment of this.
I learned many lessons not only from the HSI experience in general, but this class as well. I learned to find the beauty in everything. I learned that sometimes all it takes is a different angle to make everything become clear. I learned that sometimes everything isn’t like it seems at first. I learned that multimedia plays a large roll in everyday life. I learned a lot about the person I am and how everyone else sees me. I learned that AIDS and HIV are not things I am into (this was my sciences class). I learned that even if you aren’t into something it doesn’t mean you can’t learn from it. I learned to not take time for granted, because before you know it, it’s the end of the three weeks and you are forced to say goodbye to all the people and places you have became so close to.
My favorite memory from HSI was “sneaking out” with Brooke and Rachel. Now before you start getting ideas, this was okay-ed by the PC’s, so probably doesn’t really qualify as sneaking out, but those words made it sound like even more fun than it really was. It was the strawberry moon and there were supposed to be a bunch of shooting stars. The night was clear. Everyone is supposed to be in their room by 10:30, but we NEEDED to see the sky. We took a blanket and a few apples and found a spot in Frat Mall. We laid there talking about who we were and who we wanted to be. That is the moment that I will never forget, for that is the moment that I found friends that connected with me and understood me and didn’t care if I was crazy.
I am a different person from this experience. I am more outgoing and I speak up when I have ideas. I have learned to voice my opinions and not care to show my crazy side. I see now that people will accept me as me and I don’t have to pretend to be anyone except myself. I know that sounds cheesy, but it is really true. Sure I am excited to go home, but at the same time the last thing I want to do is leave these people.
I am ready for college now because of this experience. I am ready to show the world who I am and what I am capable of. If I could change anything about my part of HSI, I would not be as afraid of coming, I would be myself right from the beginning, that is after all what this is all about, finding yourself.
I know when I get home everyone will ask how HSI was, what I learned, who I met, what I did… all of the normal after three weeks questions. There are honestly no answers for those questions. What I have learned and felt are things that no words can describe. I guess I will just stick to it was amazing and I will never forget any of it.
For all of you reading this next year, and the year after that, and the year after that, and so on, it is your first day of class probably. No matter who you are, what you like, or what you want to do with your life, never quit smiling. This is an experience that I promise you is great. Sure, there might be mountains in your journey, but I promise you, the view from the top is worth it. Never quit climbing and striving. Use every moment to become the best you can be. Be yourself, because that is truly the best version of you. Don’t be afraid to go out and become someone new.
Here are a few more pictures of all of HSI.
Caution: There are a lot 🙂