Ever since I can remember, I have always wanted to go to the University of Delaware. Even at nine years old, I remember proudly announcing to my fourth grade teacher that I was going to become a Blue Hen. Having lived in Delaware since I was born, UD has always been a part of my life. When I was younger, every winter, my mom would take my sister and me ice skating at the Fred Rust ice arena, and each summer, we would spend countless sunny days swimming at the UD outdoor pool beneath blue and gold flags fluttering in the breeze. In 2013, I went to my first concert at the Bob Carpenter Center, cheering for Ed Sheeran under the same roof where I would watch UD women’s basketball games with my dad, rooting for Elena Delle Donne and the rest of the team. I also met countless UD students growing up who were passionate about the school, insisting it was the best decision they ever made.
One would think that I would be tired of UD before I even got here. And, truthfully, for many high school students in Delaware, their only wish is to escape the second smallest state where they have lived for all or most of their lives. But for me, my dream to come to UD has never faded. Touring colleges during spring break of my junior year, I never felt at home walking through other campuses. But when I visited UD, met with a beautiful campus and enthusiastic students, I longed to be a Blue Hen who was lounging on Harrington Turf, stopping by the dining hall for lunch (and actually not getting lost in Caesar Rodney, which seemed gigantic at the time), or chatting with friends in Trabant under the neon lights and the colorful array of flags. So, when it came time to apply for college, I knew without a doubt that UD was the place for me.
And, now that I finally made it, I couldn’t be happier. When I spy tour groups around campus, I feel proud to be a part of this school. Each day, there is something to cherish. Now I am the one striding up the steps of Memorial Hall, walking to class on the brick pathways through the Green, and studying at Morris library. I love hanging out with friends in the lounge, leading an event on my floor, having a blast at Swing Club, learning a new topic in an interesting course, or even simply gazing at the changing leaves on my way to class.
For me, it isn’t hard to see UD as my home. But that may be different for other students— and that’s okay. From joining a club, to forming relationships in classes and dorms, to chatting with professors, or to just taking the time to notice the simple pleasures around campus, I think that everyone can find a different way to appreciate UD and to find a little bit of home here. Because no matter if you have always wanted to come here, like me, or if you discovered UD later on in your college search, we can all be proud to call ourselves members of the Blue Hen family.