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Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

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September 21, 2023

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Nearly 10 years after leaving, a chance to return to a home

I returned to a past love last month. Despite a long absence, she welcomed me back with open arms. There was a warm summer breeze outside. The sun shone a little brighter. Everything seemed perfect. Heck, my past love even offered me money to come back.

Yes, exactly a decade after I began my senior year, I have returned to Bowling Green State University in search of a master’s degree and a new career, a fresh start.

Walking on campus for the first time as a student again was an amazing feeling. This is a sacred place. Now, I had been back to visit quite often. I was a regular at homecoming and my fraternity’s Founders’ Day. But those trips back, great as they were, were about nostalgia and the past. Being on campus for orientation was somehow about the future, while giving a nod to the past. I didn’t quite feel like a freshman again (because that sense of wonder and innocence can never be replicated) but the feeling felt familiar. I haven’t felt that light in some time – of course that feeling would soon be battered down by grad orientation speakers who assured us that we probably would not have any time to enjoy the things this time around that we so loved as undergrads.

Bowling Green has always been kind to me. This is not the first time it has provided me safe haven. I actually began college at another fine Ohio institution. But after the euphoria of the first few weeks of college wore off, I found myself in a major I didn’t like and at a school that wasn’t very student friendly.

So I looked at my options. The University had my new major, was closer to home and was actually a college town, not a school crammed inside an inner city neighborhood.

The University took me in and said, “you can have the education and college experience you desire, if you want to work for it.” I accepted the offer, stepped up to the challenge and had an amazing college career: friends galore via a fraternity, class and other sources; as a journalism major I did what I considered to be great work at this very newspaper, eventually serving as editor-in-chief. I had a weekly column as a senior which I used to say goodbye to the institution that brought me in. I even was a resident adviser (and recently was pleased to see that my old hall director was still on campus. Michael, we have to do lunch, I have so much to tell you).

Moving a decade into the future I found myself in need of recharging again. I had maxed out my journalism career. I loved the profession and still enjoy writing, but found the career and my life as a 30-year-old had grown stale on me. I am not back here as a journalism grad student, though that had been a dream of mine for a number of years. I had always wanted to be a journalism professor. As a reporter, I always wanted to help people, but was never quite sure that I did. Though I still believe in the power of the press, I am going to be helping people more directly.

I had reached a crossroads in my life and career. I realized my dreams were not going to come true on the road I was on. I was not going to be working at Rolling Stone or MTV, or covering Washington, D.C., politics. I needed to make a change. It is a lesson for more than just me. You must be versatile in life and willing to make a change when you are stuck. Many people spend most of their lives being stuck and have a heart attack at 42, or find themselves thinking about jumping off bridges.

At this crossroads, with help from some great people, I turned to the place that took me in before. Fellow students, (that is fun to say) know you have chosen a great school, one that will offer you the world if you choose to embrace it and actively participate in it.

Life takes strange turns. The average person will change professions several times during their lives. Some never work in the profession their undergrad degree prepared them for. I advise current undergrads to think of several different jobs they can do with their degree. The new economy is a tough place to be.

The University saved me before and while the career path it put me didn’t last until retirement, I don’t regret anything I have done.

I return to her again, seeking guidance and a new path.

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