Students can almost smell the turkey and pumpkin pie as we get ready for Thanksgiving break (or Thanksgiving catch-up, depending on how you look at it). It’s important to remind ourselves just how much we have to be thankful for as students of the University of Dallas. I have compiled a short list of things that I hope will remind us how good we have it here. Some of them have been clichéd, but I hope that I put a bit of a spin on things to make you think about our privileges in a new light.
1. We are able to give our two cents about classes offered each semester – Because UD is a smaller school, we have the opportunity to contribute ideas about what professors should offer. If there is something in particular that we’re interested in studying, we can approach a professor to see if there is potential.
2. We have the opportunity to get to know our professors outside of the classroom – I was at an event on Monday night, and one of the philosophy professors attended with his 11-year old son. After the event, I spoke with them about the event, but also about the math homework his son had to do once he was home. It was special to see this professor, whom I had previously known only through the classroom, interact with his son, and to be able to interact with both of them.
3. Everyone is gung-ho about our traditions, even the exceptionally weird ones. For better or for worse, the support of students and faculty for our traditions is unwavering. This is clearly the case for major events like Groundhog and Film Fest, but it’s also true for the more under-the-radar things (largely due to the frequency of such events) like Sunday Sundaes, Open Anselm, and Cap House. These events will always be a part of UD because there is always a group of people who care enough about maintaining our traditions, however small.
4. We have some of the most intellectual, humorous, quirky, and faithful people around. Our small campus is home to some of the biggest personalities I’ve come across and I couldn’t be more grateful. We challenge each other, encourage each other, hold one another accountable and always make one another laugh; we have multi-faceted friendships. Where else is it equally likely that you will overhear a conversation about Homer, about God or a cheesy pun? What’s cheddar than that?
When I remind myself of these things – among so many others – I think to myself, “Only at UD.” While we may often laugh at this comment, is there a better response or a better way to feel?