Sunday, November 6, 2011

Thanksgiving Thanks: Day Four: College

(I lived in the large garret room on the top floor my freshman year and the small room to the right of it my sophomore year- the one with the dormer window)
I am thankful for my college education.  Not just for the piece of paper that says I worked my butt off for four years and finished a double major, but for the entire experience.  I loved attending Southern Virginia University.

I loved the cool (not literally- no AC!), oddly shaped attic rooms I lived in my first two years in Main Hall, where we weren't supposed to hang things on the sprinkler pipes, but where else was I supposed to hang my christmas lights? I loved the hours spent in Chandler Hall rehearsing, spending time offstage not backstage (who needs one of those?) but crammed on the stairs or in the scene shop with no place to sit or in the green room where hopefully you timed things right to get back onstage because there was no way you could hear what was going on upstairs.  Writing this and reading it back to myself it kind of sounds sarcastic but I really did love all the quirks of SVU because they were our quirks.  They were part of what made SVU a family.

Not only were we so small that you knew everyone's face or their name, though you might not necessarily put the two together, but we knew the campus and loved it together.  We knew not to walk off the paths near Durham after a rainstorm for fear of losing a shoe, and we knew that there was a secret passageway from Main Hall to Durham, or maybe the library, but no one could say they had personally gone through it, just they knew that someone had.  We knew our professors, and I can personally say that I never hated a professor at SVU.

I loved being able to take a class from one of my favorite authors, Orson Scott Card.  Not only did he give me a new perspective on my favorite genres, but he showed me that authors are people too- not just mythical figures spinning perfect prose, but people with opinions and families and a job that required a lot of work, but could also be incredibly rewarding.

I also loved classes from my other professors- Professor Stoddard, Professor Cluff, Professor Dwyer, Professor Dransfield, Professor Jones- at what other university would a couple of professors sit down at a table in the cafeteria with some students and start discussing Harry Potter?

I discovered that even though I hated algebra, I loved logic problems, to the point where I think I annoyed some of my classmates in my logic class (sorry!).  I rediscovered my love of Greek mythology.  I found out how to make an auditorium with an extremely limited stage and no permanent seats into- an abbey, a Russian village, a theatre in the round, a tacky old woman's house, a Southern hair salon, and many more.  I found out how to clothe an entire play from Goodwill.  I learned how to find Cassiopeia.

I think I'll make my friends from college another post.  I am extremely thankful for my education from Southern Virginia University and if you, dear random reader, are a high school senior considering going to SVU - Go.  If you value a feeling of community and family in your life- Go.  If you want to be challenged by professors who know your potential- Go.  If you don't mind putting in the work to achieve something wonderful- Go.

1 comment:

  1. You should forward this post to SVU or Prof. Card. They'd appreciate it. Your dad, sisters, and I loved traveling six hours on a beautful drive south to see you and enjoy your amazing productions. Who could forget the homely little motel we stayed in? We, too, were amazed at the high-quality acting, direction, and set production in such a small space. I was happy when you graduated, of course, but sad to leave that part of our lives behind.