Big Decision

When you are a senior in high school the last thing you want to worry about is where you are going to go after you graduate. You are more worried about graduation itself, what your friends are doing after school, and your grades. Why worry over next year?

Yet, there is a tug in the back of your mind. What ARE you going to do after high school? If you are going to college, where? Have you decided on your major yet? What are your interests? Do you want a large school? A small one? Do you want your professors to notice you? Are you going to base your decision off of where your friends are going?

Just reading those questions is daunting.

Personal Choice

When I was looking into colleges in high school my parents helped a ton. If it wasn’t for them I never would have made my final decision. I debated between several colleges for what seemed like forever. Until my mom sat me down and asked me what my final two were did I actually have to make a decision.

My final two contesters were Hope and Calvin (don’t hate me, I have family there). So, my mom helped me organize tours at both of the colleges. After each tour she asked, “what are your likes and dislikes?” and made me write them down.

Hope had the most “likes” and while I was touring that final time it felt like home. The students were so kind and open to helping me. I loved the small campus and being able to make close connections with my professors, which is something I didn’t find at other colleges. After that last visit the fall of my senior year of high school, I was set on Hope College being my home for the next four years.

Benefits I’ve Found

While Hope College is a small and homely campus, I have found there to be many other characteristics of the Orange and Blue Anchor that create the love Hope gives. One of them being the clubs. There are roughly 80 different clubs and student lead organizations at Hope – an impressive number. My freshman year, being that COVID was running rampage, felt isolating. I had only one friend, my roommate, and that was it. So when clubs reached out to connect with the student body I jumped into the catalog and did some reading. I am now part of five different clubs and student organizations as well as running a club myself and have never been more satisfied with myself.

Hope tries so hard to reach out to each and every student and create connections. One way this is done is through all of the resources that are provided. From the Boerigter Center for Calling and Career to the Klooster Center for Excellence in Writing, what can’t Hope help with? There are offices that will work with you on financing, creating resumes, editing papers, doing research and mental health. I have utilized most of those resources. I’ve gotten counseling and it was one of the best things I’ve done. The woman that helped me was very open and friendly, wanting to get to know me as a person rather than just a number in the student body. Hope College has allowed me to feel so welcomed and assured that I am never alone.

Whether or not you are still deciding or you’re ready to walk the beautiful grounds of this college, Hope welcomes you. During a time when the world can cause severe stress and anxiety, Hope is a place where you can find your home.

Published by Emily Leegwater

Class of 2024 Hometown: Zeeland, MI Major: English; Creative Writing emphasis Minor: Studio Art

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