Edit desk: Growing in college


As I am more than halfway through my Lehigh undergraduate career, it’s crazy to think about how much I have matured and grown since high school.

I applied early decision to Lehigh in October 2019. Since then, I was accepted into my dream college, graduated high school, survived a worldwide pandemic, started classes at Lehigh, joined a fraternity and interned for a Major League Baseball team. 

However, my maturity is evident by more than just the milestones and accomplishments. 

Unlike what feels like 99% of the Lehigh undergraduate student population, I am not from the Northeastern United States and I am not a finance, engineering or accounting major. I am a journalism major with minors in marketing and business, from Oakland, California. 

What most students would find commonalities in at Lehigh, I have found discrepancies. I felt that I was unlike other students, and during my freshman and sophomore years, I found these differences to be a bad thing. 

I was always trying to find other students like me at Lehigh on LinkedIn, searching for people who I could relate to in different departments. I was afraid that I made a mistake in coming to Lehigh from California and choosing the major that I did. 

But I was wrong — I had made one of the greatest decisions of my life. 

This past summer, I had the incredible opportunity to intern with the Oakland Athletics as a game day intern. 

I reported directly to the President of the Athletics and his front office team. I conducted and presented research regarding stadium development and compiled reports for the A’s proposed new ballpark development at Howard Terminal. 

I provided stadium tours to VIP attendees, performed homestand recaps, measured financial performances following each homestand and oversaw and managed gameday and business operations for home games. 

This amazing experience made me realize how many different career opportunities I have, whether they be in business, marketing, journalism or communications. Lehigh is an incredible university that enables you to pursue career paths in any and all possible opportunities, which I learned first-hand.

My experience at Lehigh has also taught me to only worry about myself and what I can control. 

When I was younger, and especially when I was applying to colleges, I was always worried about the outcome and concerned how others would dictate my results. I would be over-anxious and obsessive over the little things, questioning every minor detail and hoping to control the uncontrollable. 

When I applied to Lehigh, I was a 17-year-old kid who had lived his whole life in the Bay Area. In fact, I am the sixth generation in my family born and raised in the Bay. 

Living in Eastern Pennsylvania is completely different, not only because of the imperfect weather and the East Coast sports bias but because I am 3,000 miles away from home. 

I did not go to college a car ride away, I went to a completely different world. I cannot go home every weekend and have a home cooked meal, see my dogs or sleep in my own bed. 

Although I have become envious of those studying so close to home, I have become accustomed to planning out when I will see my family, knowing that I will not see them over Pacing Break, LeLaf or for a random Sunday lunch. These types of planned visits that I schedule with my family show how my life will be after graduation: relying on myself and becoming independent. 

College is so much more than just about having a great education. It is also about making great friends, creating unforgettable memories and growing and maturing into an adult. All of which I am doing well.

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1 Comment

  1. robert davenport on

    “Living in Eastern Pennsylvania is completely different, not only because of the imperfect weather…” I have yet to live anywhere with perfect weather. In any case if the weather was perfect I would probably not be able to identify it as such. One of my roommates at Lehigh was proud of the bay area but adapted to the weather in Bethlehem (which was more imperfect because of an active Bethlehem Steel and colder and snowier winters). This you will also learn.

    The sports bias is real and increases as you near New York or Philadelphia as is the legitimate bias against all things Lafayette.

    Absent this, your article is a great advertisement for Lehigh and I think you should get a tuition discount for writing it. Congrats on what you have learned so far.

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