After four years, the class of 2016 has transitioned from students, to alumni. Six graduating seniors have reflected upon their undergraduate experiences. Goldy Tenreiro-Braschi, from Caracas, Venezuela, discusses her time at Emory.
Recently, it has become very tempting to try to sum up my past four years here. I have the urge to pack everything I have learned, everyone I have met and all that I have done into a box labeled “My time at Emory University!”
Not surprisingly, change does not always work like this. Emory has taught us to analyze and synthesize all that comes our way. We yearn for epiphanies, profound changes and deep meanings. Yet, when reflecting on my time at Emory, I find that not every moment was vibrant with significance. In fact, resounding revelation only defines a few of my memories here. The majority are shaped by simple activities that might appear mundane: walking around Wonderful Wednesday, running in Lullwater and getting brunch at Rise-n-Dine.
I expected a profound transformation. But what I have learned from my time here is that it is not Emory’s duty to change me; rather, it is Emory’s duty to help me to grow into the best me.
Emory discovered me.
The ultimate value of college has been the discovery of the importance of education within personal growth. Learning is a skill I personally mastered here. A prerequisite for learning is willingness. Through exposure, Emory has taught me the importance of willingness and openness, both of which have helped me solidify my values, opinions and perspective.
I’m still from New York City, I still have the same major and I’m still surrounded by the same friends. But Emory has given me the opportunity to thrive within my personal limitations, embracing them as an opportunity for learning and ultimately growing from them. I am the same, but different.
When I first arrived at Emory, there was a special sense of possibility. This immense potential was turned into energy that pushed me to sign up for unique classes, various clubs and socialize with new people. As I prepare to graduate, it becomes easy to feel as if that energy has slipped away from me through the mystery of time. But the reality is, this energy is just beginning to take hold. After all, as I am sure you all have heard, this is just the beginning.