We have to write a scholarship report for the scholarship I have at my school

I have dreaded writing this. Not because I do not like to write, because I do. It is because it is yet another indicator that my time at Transy as a student is at it’s end. To adequately express the experiences of my senior year, let alone the past four years and the hopes of years to come is an almost impossible task. If I turned this in on actual paper there would no doubt be wrinkle marks where tears have fallen. I don’t recall what I have written on each of my previous reports, though I know I am always informal with them, almost having a one-sided conversation.

One thing I do think I have included in each was how grateful I am for Transy and the last four years I’ve lived here. It feels as much as home as West Liberty does in some ways. I’ve lived almost 1/3 of the years of which I actually have memories here. It’s shaped me in more ways than I can even begin to think of. I think I am beginning to understand the attachment people have to their alma maters.

I can honestly say I have yet to know where I will wake up in fifteen days. In retrospect, I should have worked with the Career Services Center a little more to figure that out.  It is good to know that it will still be there for me after I graduate. I won’t be waking up on a Sunday and going to the cafeteria, texting my friends to come eat with me, then continuing my ceramics May Term class. I won’t be going on assignment for The Rambler making sure an event was covered. I won’t be doing research for a paper or reading a classical text or studying for an exam. There’ll just be me, a culmination of 21 years of experience including 4 years of collegiate education, staring at what is yet to come—society, problems, solutions, the future, the universe, the unknown.

It’s daunting knowing that at least some constraints aren’t set on my life, schedules for classes or eating, syllabi for homework, events calendar for activities and appointments for different responsibilities. I’ve learned I don’t do well without some construction, though Transy has helped me change that a little. When you’ve got a week to figure out how to photograph several stories for a newspaper, your page editors are slow or not cooperating, you have few photographers on which you can rely, you haven’t really read the stories and probably won’t know what exactly they are about until Wednesday night and you have classes and other things to worry about too, you have to figure out how to make a system that works and try to stick to it. I can’t say I was the best photo editor for The Rambler, but I like to think I did a good job and I hope some of my photographers learned in the process too.  But I know each week I did the best that I could. And I had the best people along with me, working on other aspects and doing some of what I believe is the most underappreciated work on campus. But through The Rambler I have solidified some of my best friendships and learned more about my own interests in design, photography, font, layout and newspapers in general.

My two other biggest extracurriculars this year were the Student Art League and the Transylvanian. With the SAL, we didn’t do as much as I wanted to this year but over the past three years I’ve been impressed what this fledgling organization has done and I hope that things will continue in the future. In regards to the Transylvanian, I was the Editor this year after being the Submissions officer for the past two years. Though it all came together later than usual and advertisement didn’t start until late, we still had about 200 submissions if I remember correctly, more than the past two years I know for certain. Word of mouth really helped and I can’t wait to see it printed out completely (it is in print currently). I’m extremely proud of my work with my design, one of my best friends, getting it to look how it looks. And the cooperation amongst the group as a whole was really inspirational and professional which I really valued. I’m proud to have been the editor for one of the oldest art and literary magazines and I hope the campus and our alumni enjoy the publication we as a team have put together.

Briefly, I will mention the Kenan Grant project I did over the summer. I was so grateful for Transy to give me that opportunity and I met so many wonderful people and developed my photography skills. The show at the Mayor’s office in the Fall went wonderful and everyone was really please with the results. I truly think some of the images I captured have been my favorites. I will mention one in general that is in the Student Show currently titled Mother. They are the hands of an elderly lady sowing on a piece of cloth for the giant quilt, the community making of which I was photographing. She and her daughter, a middle-aged lady, had been gluing felt onto a piece of fabric but decided to let the mother sew her own while the daughter worked on her square. She did so with slight difficultly, the mother sewing that is, but she did it. Later, I was contacted by the daughter for a copy of the photograph after she viewed it at the show, a request that I was happy to fulfill. However, what meant the most to me is that she wanted the photograph because her mother did not recall that day at all. Knowing that I captured that moment for her, not to mention the rest of the project for other people, made any doubts I had about the project and it’s value worth it and the time I spent on it.

In regards to the actual reason I am at school, classes, I have my shares of satisfactions and regrets. To list of for my as well as your benefit, I took: Alexander to Cleopatra, Augustan Rome, Senior Seminar, Drawing I, Lifetime fitness, Ceramics IV, Imperial Rome and Religion in Ancient Greece and now during mayterm I’m in Ceramics Independent Study. I’ll cover my non-major classes first—I was reluctant to go into drawing even though I needed it for my studio art minor. However, I honestly gained an appreciation for it, enjoyed ever minute of it and think I picked up some valuable skills. Lifetime fitness was a good refresher from my high school health classes and helped me remember the importance of staying healthy. In Ceramics IV and my may term class I’ve been able to further my learning of on of my desires and one of the possible career paths my life may take.  After taking Intro to visual art either my first year or sophomore year my life was changed; if I hadn’t taken that class I’m not sure what might have happened. But I truly think Transy has helped me both find and develop one of my greatest passions. I just hope you, dear reader, will come to my final show in a few weeks.

In regards to Classics, my major-I would have never thought going into college that I would come out with a degree in the Humanities. Math and Science were my best subjects in High School and at Transy I did decently, but they weren’t my passion. After taking Latin, I fell completely in love and became one of the four classics majors on this campus. People often ask what I will do with it. I often say I’ll find a job doing something, maybe sometimes responding that I’ll pursue a graduate degree in it, which I may do, but I find it hard to put in words the value and use of analyzing 2000 year old texts and all of the filters through which they’ve passed as well as studying the history of peoples from which we draw our own society. Classics, especially studying history, has helped me see everything, and I mean everything, in a new way.  It’s helped me draw connections and think outside the box as well as respect and analyze classical arguments made by all of the scholars before me. Being able to think and learn: it has taught me that and so much more. I could talk for days about all of the things I have learned just in the past semester, let alone the past four years.

I must give time to mention specifically Frank Russell, a man I admire more than anyone can possibly know. He has shown me such kindness and taught me so, not only academically but how to be a better person in general, about life and living and learning. He has helped me with my mental illness as well, something I have been struggling with as long as I have been at Transy, something with which I am becoming better able to cope. There is not a more understanding, more thoughtful or more brilliant professor on this campus and the desire for learning he possesses has infected me. If it wasn’t for Transy, I would have never met him.

I have already talked far more than I had planned to and probably far more than you desire to read. But I must make one last mention of all of the people Transy has placed in my life, friends and colleagues, not only ones who are students but even workers on campus. These people have touched me greatly and have each taught me many things. Some have even saved my life and for that I am eternally grateful.  It has been such a wonderful pleasure to learn along side these people and to work with and get to know them outside of classes. Some of my friends have introduced me to interests I never know I had and some of the things I don’t know how I lived without before. Transy has fostered the perfect environment for me to learn with them as well as learn from them. Even though sometimes we have argued or times have been tough, I am still grateful for each and every person I call my friend and I know many of the friendships will last far beyond when I leave Transy.

This isn’t as detailed as I would have liked, though to write each wonderful thing Transy has given me would take far too long. I will carry everything I have learned here with me, and all of the people too. This education has truly changed my life for the better and for good. The light has been passed to me, and I just hope I can pass it to others and shine it on a world that so desperately needs it. 

2 years ago · 7 notes

  1. hbelam posted this