All of my life, I have been a little shy. Not shy enough that I never had any friends, but shy enough that it took me a long time to make them.
Elementary school was awesome because I was with the same people for a long time. Middle school was weird because I went to a completely different school than my old friends, but I was more confident socially. In high school, I joined the football team and eventually the choir too. I really came out of shell, and by the time I graduated I didn’t feel like the quiet and shy guy I had been most of my young life.
Then I came to SMU.
My freshman year was a complete regression for me socially. I made maybe three friends, and they were really more like acquaintances than anything else. I should point out, I have been a commuter for the entire four years I have been at SMU.
I was working two jobs on top of all my classes from about halfway through that first semester. So, it wasn’t like I was being anti-social, I just didn’t have the time to really go out and make friends. I would look around and see alI the other students laughing and joking with their friends and feel like I was missing something huge.
Then, I took my first reporting class in SMU’s journalism school (the J-School).
There is something about the J-School that simply forces friendships. When you decide to make journalism part of your degree plan, you are deciding to make the journalism department and everyone in it, part of your family.
There is just something about stressing out over a deadline, struggling to get match-on-action right in your how-to video or dying as you try and turn a package in 24 hours only to discover your live-shot sucks that builds long lasting friendships.
I can honestly say the J-School saved my college experience and changed they way I viewed life at SMU as a commuter.