Tick tock. Tick tock. Tick tock.
Even as I write this column, the time that I have remaining at Notre Dame dwindles.
I tend to experience mixed emotions when I consider how little time I have left as a student. Right now, my current feelings are bittersweet. Every academic term — from kindergarten, to grade school and through high school — was meant to build towards the culminating years of my development: these four years at Notre Dame.
When I reflect on these past four years, the fond memories absorb me. I remember forming and kindling some of the best friendships of my life. I’ve benefitted greatly from the mentorship, support and kindness so abundantly present here. There’s something special about this place, and I have been so fortunate to be the recipient of its effects. No matter how different the university may look or become in the long term, I will always remember it as my quaint second home.
Although a part of me will probably not be ready to pick up my bags and leave my university forever, I am also excited about what lies ahead.
Why? The mystery of our futures is part of life’s fun. I have no idea what’s going to happen to me next. While the script of youth is relatively structured and planned, after graduation, anything can happen. Life truly is what we make of it at every stage. We are in the driver’s seat to try to make the most of it.
I never made a Notre Dame bucket list, but there were a few tasks on my agenda that I wanted to accomplish before leaving. First, I wanted to win the Bookstore Basketball championship. I now realize that this wish was just a pipe dream. I wanted to visit every dorm. Nope. I wanted to see Notre Dame win a national championship. Close, but no cigar. Although these experiences would be nice to have, they are relatively small in terms of meaning.
More broadly, I wanted to grow spiritually. Notre Dame is definitely a place that fosters and kindles a relationship with God more than anywhere I’ve ever been. I wanted to grow physically and emotionally. I am more disciplined and mature not just because of age, but also because of my college experience.
College forces you to get to know yourself better, and therefore become more comfortable and self-assured. I feel ready for the next step, but I will forever be proud of being able to say that I am now part of the long gold line that is Notre Dame. Notre Dame helps nurture you in the nest, but eventually, you have to discover what’s out in the open and fly away.
What a pleasure it’s been to be a part of an amazing staff at Scholastic this year. I’ve participated in the magazine since freshman year, but this year has been the most enjoyable. I am so proud of our work, beginning with the issue commemorating the life of Fr. Hesburgh and now ending with a cover story profiling Notre Dame’s esteemed basketball coaches.
I’ve been graced with the opportunity to work with an incredible group of editors who have been so diligent, so thoughtful and so enthusiastic to collaborate with in creating the magazine.
Since this is the final issue with the current staff, I am so excited to pass the torch to our new Editor-In-Chief, Cassidy McDonald, who I know will take the magazine to new heights over this next year. Cassidy will be a great leader and a great steward to preserve and carry forward the long tradition of Scholastic, which will enter its 150th year of publication next year.
So long for now, and thank you all so much for your support this year. We hope that we’ve stayed true to our mission to inform and entertain you.
Go Scholastic! Go Irish!