This past January I left my home in search of new experiences at William & Mary as a spring transfer student. Just a couple hours away felt like infinite space from my family, friends, and most importantly, my pets. I felt ready to venture out into college life, yet the bittersweet moments leading up to moving out made me question my readiness.
Would I be behind on making friends coming in halfway through the academic year?
Would classes be harder than I could handle?
Would I feel homesick?
There were so many unknowns leaving home and adapting to a new environment. My orientation group was made up of around six people, each of us spring transfers of different graduation years. Within a couple hours I had already made a couple friends which would become some of my best friends later in the semester.
There are some things that I didn’t quite recognize until after beginning my first semester. Everyone is going through the same process. No one comes into college knowing exactly who they’ll be friends with, how classes will go, or what their future holds. It doesn’t matter if you begin as a freshman in the fall, or a transfer in the spring, building a home away from home is about finding people and places that make you feel comfortable. Sounds like a daunting task, but in the moment you won’t know you’re building brick by brick until you take a step back and realize that all of the fun experiences and friendships made along the way have built four walls and a roof. This is what makes William & Mary so special. The saying “Those who come here belong here” is taken to heart. I’ve only spent a short amount of time here, but the welcoming nature of W&M has constructed a foundation on which I’ve built my home away from home.