Moving to the city was a big step in my life. Although I only had to move about an hour away from my home, I was nervous (and excited) to see what the big city had in store for me. Due to the fact that I do not have a very good sense of direction, I thought that navigating public transportation would be a nightmare. Before deciding to explore the city and TRY to learn how the El works, I metamorphosed into a social butterfly and made some new friends.
If you ever go to any DePaul event as an incoming student, or even as an undergrad, you will realize that the word “diversity” is said a handful of times. A few handfuls. The word was stressed so much and I forgot its meaning until I actually started to make friends who were from so many different walks of life. Suburban Amanda would never have thought that she could find common interest with a Nigerian girl who moved to North Carolina before attending DePaul, or an English boy whose accent is too charming to handle.
The opportunities and the experiences I have had so far as a freshman at DePaul were all heightened by the fact that all of my friends are (at first glance) so different than I am. Here I realized that cliques are a thing of the past and you don’t have to enjoy the same style of music to learn and grow with a friendly person. For example, I made a new friend during winter quarter who is from Kentucky. A few weeks ago he packed his car with friends and snacks and drove us 5 hours to his hometown of Louisville to experience the Kentucky Derby.
DePaul set up the foundation for this experience to happen because if they didn’t enroll such a diverse spectrum of people, I never would have been able to wear a giant hat at Derby. I learned how to properly bet on horses and how to apply several layers of sunscreen because the southern sun is very unforgiving. DePaul has pulled me out of my suburban bubble and has revealed to me a world of diversity and endless new experiences with people from all of the world. I can’t wait to see what next quarter has in store for me, and who I’m going to meet next.