About a week before I accepted my place as a member of the Class of 2014, sometime in April 2010, I took the hour-long car ride with my parents to tour Vassar’s campus for the first time. Fortunately, morning traffic made us late for the information session before the tour.
I say fortunately because while we waited for the tour to begin, my parents and I had the opportunity to walk around campus on our own for a bit. Before this visit, I had only seen Vassar through a few pictures on the school website. Yet these pictures did not do the campus justice.
Walking around, I was absolutely amazed by its beauty and by the students engaged in discussions outside of the bookstore. We eventually made our way to the Admissions building where student tour guides were waiting for their next tours to start. I asked one of them how they liked the school, and from the moment I finished my question I could see the excitement that was about to be their response. They told me about all about the wonderful things they did, one of which I remember was House Team. I was so inspired by the tour guide’s passion for this school; they made me realize that Vassar was an amazing place full of exciting things.
After the tour, my parents and I drove home. I couldn’t believe that I had not considered Vassar before my grandfather suggested it just five days prior to its application closing. Shortly after this I had made my decision to attend Vassar.
It’s hard to believe that four years have passed since that decision was made. It’s even harder to believe that we’re now in our final days of senior year. (Honestly, where did the time go?!?!) Coming to Vassar I had no idea where I’d end up. I came in as a Pre-Med Biology Major, but I am leaving as a Music and Psychology double major, something I am very proud about. I had no idea that I would do House Team for two years, just like that tour guide whose name I unfortunately do not remember.
Even though I distinctly remembering saying one evening in a Jewett common room that I would never be on VSA, I found myself in an executive position alongside my best friend, and it has been one of the greatest experiences of my Vassar career. I have learned so much, not only about student organizations and programming; I’ve learned so much about myself, this school and its students.
Before this, I had not fully understood the importance of small things, like saying “Hey all” instead of “Hey guys.” Yes it’s senior year, but it’s never too late to learn. We’re now entering the “real world”, a world that is nothing like Vassar, but keeping in mind these little things can be some of our takeaways.
Also during senior year, I came to realize that it really is the people who you share your experiences with that really make or break those experiences for you. I know it’s cliché, but we often take for granted that we have such amazing people in our lives. I am so fortunate to have had the opportunity to share the hectic but enlightening experience that is VSA with my best friend and with so many wonderful people who I would not have met otherwise.
I will forever be grateful for having met and know all of the wonderful Jewetters with whom I shared many 2 a.m. fire alarms. Freshman year intro chemistry wouldn’t have been the same without two of my housemates. I did choir for four years not just because I enjoy singing, but because of the great people with whom I’d spend every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday rehearsals. I’m lucky to be surrounded by so many beautiful, wonderful, brilliant individuals who have inspired, supported and befriended me.
I don’t want to, nor am I ready to, say goodbye to everyone. I wish we could go back just a few semesters to relive some of our fondest memories. But alas, Time Turners do not work and graduation is right around the corner.
These past four years have been amazing, inspiring and life changing. I know I’ve been overly involved in everything Vassar, but I wouldn’t change this if I could. I’m proud to have lived in Jewett for three years, two of which I was on House Team, to have been a Daisy, to have been on VSA, to have been in a variety of student organizations, and to be a Music and Psychology double major. Each of these has contributed to my Vassar experience, an experience that I have learned and grown from, an experience I wouldn’t have had, had my grandfather not mentioned this place. I owe a huge thank you to Vassar and to everyone who was a part of my experience here—friends, peers in class, people who I only knew from passing on the way to class. Every one of you made my experience at Vassar what it was. I also owe a thank you to my grandfather for suggesting the school celebrating its 150th wasn’t for you, I’d likely be sitting somewhere else right now. So thank you so much. It’s been an amazing four years that I wouldn’t trade for anything. I’m going to miss this place so much.
Again, I don’t want to say goodbye; goodbye is too permanent. Let’s just say ta-ta for now! <3
—Stephanie Goldberg is a music and psychology double major and is the outgoing VSA Vice President for Activities.