COLUMN: Going to college out of state, leads to much more

October 1, 2021

There are so many factors that go into picking a place to continue your education – programs, price, people, traditions, sports and those are just a few.

In my case, it was all about location. Once I graduated high school, I was one of those teenagers that needed to go off on my own.

Did I think that I would go to a school five and a half hours away? Absolutely not. But it was the best decision I could have made for myself. 

As I continue my third year at Central Michigan University, I have come to greatly appreciate my decision.  

Coming from a small town in Northern Illinois, going out of state allowed me to have a clean slate. 

Coming into my freshman year, not knowing anyone – including who I was going to room with – was terrifying. Thankfully, all that worry was for nothing. I didn’t know it yet, but I had just met some of my best friends. 

From late-night studying, staying up until 5 a.m. watching movies, even running through the parking lot of our dorm to make it to Taco Bell before it closed, they helped me see things in myself that I never saw when I was back home.

With going somewhere new and out-of-state, you get to experience all kinds of different people. Experiencing new people is part of what helps you grow as a person.

Going to a school out-of-state can be a scary thing, but there are so many groups and clubs to join that can help ease the transition. Keep your mind open for all these amazing benefits of going to a school away from home. 

December 6, 2023

When I first wrote this piece, I was a staff reporter on the sports desk at Central Michigan Life for a month. Now, two and a half years later, here I am sitting at my desk as the Sports Editor, adding on to one of my first pieces, for it to be one of my last. 

In my first version of this, I focused on why for me going to an out-of-state school was a good idea and what you can learn. But reflecting on what I wrote, it’s not just about the school. It’s what CMU has led me to, and that is CM Life.

Working here turned into more than gaining experience, but with that I have gotten to do things that I could never imagine. 

From interviewing leaders who were a part of Title IX, season opener games, covering power five schools and even heartbreaking season enders. It has made me appreciate my career and where I am going. 

When I started at CM Life, I had no idea that I was going to still be here. After my first year, I didn’t know if it was for me, but with a change in leadership, I stuck it out. Now, I am in a position that I thought I would never see myself: the Sports Editor. 

Not just a sports editor but the first female sports editor in over 50 years, if ever.

Last fall, then Sports Editor Sean Chase told me that I was going to be taking over and when he told me that, I laughed. He looked at me and said, “I am not kidding.” 

From there he trained me to take over in the spring. He believed in me; when I first started at CM Life, I would look at his articles to learn from him, so his support made me believe I could do this. 

Behind him, the encouragement came from CM Life Advisor Regan Foster and then-Editor-in-Chief Aurora Abraham. They supported me, and with their guidance, I believed in myself to lead the sports desk for the next year.

There is only so many words on this page that I can fit to thank everyone but to my best friends...

Kaia Zimmerman has such a big heart, and having her by my side for the past year has meant so much to me. It’s given me confidence to do this job; without her I couldn’t do this.

Hadlee Peters, seeing her blossom to the person she is today from the very first day I met her has brought me so much joy. I thank CM Life for bringing us together every day.

Sydney Neal and Hunter Gudyka, thank you so much for being a part of my journey: The amount of talent you both have is endless. I can’t wait to see what you guys do from here. 

Zipporah Abarca has given me so much guidance this semester and it has been such an honor to be a part of her staff and her friend. The encouraging words and support she gives me every day means the world. 

Finally, to the person I started this journey with, Megan Youngblood. She has been my rock throughout these past two years. Thank you, Megan, for showing me what strength is because you are truly the strongest person I have ever met, and you have taught me so much. 

I owe so much to this organization and the people that I have met here. For the past two and half years this has been the place where I go to laugh, do homework, cry and just hangout, because that’s what CM Life is. It’s my safe space, my favorite place, my home.