With summer around the corner, it feels good to say au revoir to another year at Union. In all honesty, I’ve yet to experience my “best” year here at Union, but Sophomore year was somewhat better than Freshman year. The usual happened: I met new people, discovered something else about myself and my principles, my outlook on life shifted a bit, and I grew more impatient with graduating.

If there was something I would advise to upcoming sophomores, I would say: “grow through what you go through.” I challenged my comfort zone in so many aspects this year: traveling more around Schenectady and across the North American border, starting new relationships with people, attending events that weren’t entirely my cup or tea, and engaging in conversations with people whose comments were (most of the time) cringe worthy. In all, those moments of confusion (that led to immense overthinking) and slight uneasiness allowed me to develop something sincerer about myself.

I won’t go on—although there are moments I question my presence at this school—but do remember that growth (at whatever degree) expands our minds, because our perceptions are challenged, and from there, it becomes difficult for our minds to “shrink” back to the comfort zone it originated with.

Bottom line, it’s your job to take the risk to be your authentic self.