By James Ensor// Editor-in-Chief
In just over a week, I will be graduating from High Point University. As I prepare to leave this place that I’ve considered home for the past four years, I am both excited and sad to see this journey come to an end.
A few weeks ago, I was presenting on a panel for undergraduate admissions when one of my fellow graduates said, “I’m not ready to leave HPU on May 6.” Her statement got me thinking – am I ready to leave HPU after commencement?
After what seems like a whirlwind of emotions and thoughts, I have come to the conclusion that myself and my fellow graduates are ready for life after HPU. Are we going to miss this place? Of course. But, are we prepared to face the next journey and lead a life of significance? Absolutely.
When I reflect on my time at HPU, a few terms come to mind – “extraordinary education,” “inspiring environment” and “caring people.” Yes, this is HPU’s famous tagline that everyone can repeat in their sleep…but, it’s a true reflection of what HPU embodies.
When I think of the extraordinary education I’ve received, I think of the holistic aspects I’ve been exposed to and the foundation for success HPU has helped me build. HPU does things differently, and that’s a great thing. From getting the opportunity to talk to some of the world’s most influential people like Steve Wozniak, General Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, Tom Brokaw and Biz Stone, to working with some of the most respected faculty in their field, HPU has provided me with an education that no other university can.
When I think of the inspiring environment that I’ve been surrounded by, I think of the lessons I’ve learned from the many aspects of our campus. I’m not referring to the fact that we have a beautiful campus, but the practicality of our campus. Hayworth Fines Arts Center has exposed me to some of the world’s finest music and arts. The Tilley Trading Room in the Plato S. Wilson School of Commerce has allowed me to master industry-leading software and technology. Cottrell Hall has allowed me to grow academically and professionally. You can replicate the aesthetics of HPU, but you can’t replicate the outcomes that HPU produces.
When I think of caring people, I think of the wonderful community we have on campus. In August 2013, I arrived on campus knowing one person – today, I have a close group of friends that have become my second family. Not only that, but I’ve had fellow students to lean on for support and growth opportunities. And when it comes to the faculty and staff, HPU can’t get any better. We’ve been truly blessed to be surrounded by great people and great minds.
As we enter the next phase in our life, we will think back to our experiences on campus and to the life lessons we’ve learned along the way. HPU has provided us with more than just an education. We might not immediately recognize all the values and lessons we’ve gained over these past four years, but one day we will look back on our time together and realize that we owe so much more to HPU than one could ever imagine. And for that, I know myself and my fellow graduates will be forever indebted to HPU.