"Happy Birthday, Dad!" & Being a St. Louisian at SLU
Once you leave for college, you’ll quickly realize [if you had not yet already] how much you value and love your family. Although Saint Louis University is my new home - and I could not be happier nor feel more at home there - no college campus or graduating class can replace your siblings, parents and house in which you grew up.
Many of my friends at SLU travel across the country (and even the world!) to come to this wonderful University. But I, being a native of St. Louis, must only drive 25 minutes to reach this beautiful campus. I will admit that as a senior in high school I was very wary of going to college in my home city. I convinced myself that I needed to “get away” and “experience the world.” However, once I finally opened my mind and heart to what Saint Louis University had to offer me as a student, friend, Billiken and man for others, no distance (or lack thereof) could keep me away.
And upon move-in as a freshman, I immediately realized the numerous benefits of being a St. Louisian at SLU. I could go on and on about how phenomenal this city is! Y’all already know that the 2011 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals have my heart! St. Louis has everything a city can offer a college student: professional sports, night life, a dozen concert venues, the nation’s largest city park and one of the best zoos in the world, free museums, theaters and sightseeing, and a climate that allows you to enjoy every season… sometimes even in the same week!
But the greatest benefit of being a St. Louisian at SLU has been the time I’ve been able to spend with my family. The picture above is of my brother, sister and I celebrating my dad’s birthday at the beginning of December. Had I been in any other city, I would have missed this birthday, and so many more. I don’t live at my St. Louis south county house, nor do I visit too often, but at least once I month I have the opportunity to return home for a good meal or to hang out with one of my siblings around the city. Whereas some of my friends must wait months before being with their their loved ones, I can constantly look forward to our next meeting… Something I didn’t think I would want as a senior in high school, but now something, as a college student, I could not cherish more.
My family respects that I am “away” at college, and they are never overbearing, clingy or expecting that I spend a lot of time of them. While on campus, they consider me “six hours away,” at least until it is time to meet up, have something dropped off at school, hitch a ride for a haircut, or spend an afternoon with some quite-missed relatives — then I am once again only 25 minutes away!
So if you are a senior in a St. Louis high school and uncertain about SLU being so close to home, do not let that deter you at all. I thought that being close to home was going to be a “sacrifice” of going to SLU, but I now know it is truly a benefit. Give SLU the shot it absolutely deserves of being your University.
Be a Billiken. Be Here.