The Collegian
Sunday, June 16, 2024

Proclamation revisited

On Sunday, wearing my graduation robe along with the rest of the University of Richmond senior women, going through Proclamation Night for the second time, was a bit surreal.

Surreal, because three short years ago we were all wearing white sundresses and writing letters starting with "Dear future self..."

For me, and I'm sure for many others, it was surreal for a different reason: Because at my first Proclamation Night, my college experience wasn't what I thought it would be.

I hadn't swiftly formed life-long bonds, as my best friends from home and the other girls in my dorm seemed to have done. Only a month into the semester, I was unsure if Richmond was the place for me.

What amazes me is that the girls who I sat with in the chapel this past Sunday, I hadn't even known existed three years ago. I wish I could go back and tell my first-year self that these friends were out there, sitting in that chapel with me, and that they would be worth the wait.

In my letter to myself though, I had remained hopeful. I had written: "But I just have to go with the flow, and everything will work out for the best." And I'd like to think it has.

That is my advice to first-years, and even sophomores and juniors, who feel they don't belong -- it can get better. As long as you put forth the effort, smile and sometimes just go with the flow, you can make your college experience what you want it to be.

It might not be until the end of your junior year, or even the beginning of senior year, but soon enough you'll be sitting on the other side of the chapel, knowing that Richmond was the right school for you.

Contact Collegian staff writer Elizabeth Hyman at

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