I’m one month into my last semester at Loyola and it’s hard not to look wistfully upon the freshman as they begin their academic journey. Seeing it through their eyes helps me remember how the biggest event in my social calendar used to be dinner in the Orleans Room or how much Wolf Bucks come in handy when you’ve spent all night studying in the library and you need some brain food fast.
A lot has changed over the years; the Saints fans have taken the bags off their heads and are now gearing up for their return to the field as a Super Bowl winning team, the student body has grown considerably, and a young kid from St. Louis has grown up and learned that he can make it out on his own. As maudlin as senior year will make any person, it helps for me to remember that the important things haven’t changed and are an aspect of this campus and this city that I will always be able to return to. From something as simple as a streetcar ride downtown being only a dollar and a quarter away to knowing that my professors door is always open to any questions I may have, I have wholly embraced what this city and this university has given me.
Last night I was having coffee with a friend at Rue de la Course on Oak and Carrollton and we were discussing some of the important things we learned early on at Loyola. For instance, the fact that even though it may be a hot day you still need to pack a sweatshirt for the cool temperatures in the class room; or even though it only takes you five minutes to walk anywhere on campus you still need to factor in an extra fifteen minutes because you’ll see so many familiar faces along the way you’ll invariably have to stop and chat with. It’s that sense of community and familiarity that I will miss most about this school. Its comforting to see a new group of students this year carrying on that tradition and knowing they will provide a welcome atmosphere for me when I come back to visit and plop down on those benches outside the library to see the students rushing past, making connections and helping new students learn the ropes.