Dear Class of 2020,
Although we haven’t officially met, you’ve been on my mind during spirited sporting events, lazy Saturday mornings in the Pit and 3 a.m. ZSR breakdowns. Through every tear and triumph, I’ve hoarded any advice, tips and tidbits I could get my hands on so that your transition to Wake Forest could be as seamless as possible.
Let me be one of the first to officially welcome you to campus. You’re off to a great start by picking up a copy of the weekly student-run newspaper, the Old Gold & Black.
It seems like only yesterday I was moving into my Bostwick home as a wide-eyed freshman, eager for change and hungry for independence. Three years, 96 Friday nights, 110 credit hours and countless coffees later, my immense amount of love for Mother So Dear is stronger than ever.
Despite your varied backgrounds, beliefs and walks of life, you have all been gifted a truly amazing opportunity. As my chapter at Wake Forest is quickly coming to a close, I challenge you to seize every day as a Demon Deacon. The years will go by quickly, so make the most of every second.
First and foremost, be intentional. No matter who you were or what you did in high school, a blank canvas lies ahead of you. It’s easy to fall victim to complacency and navigate your day on autopilot. However, Wake Forest offers incredible resources like an award-winning library, study abroad opportunities and student research facilities, as well as a support team of faculty and staff to help you achieve your goals. Decide what you want to achieve, and live every moment in pursuit of it.
When you reflect on your undergraduate experience, you’ll wish you had appreciated all that campus has to offer. So join a new club, enroll in a Student Union Short Course, buy tickets to the campus concert and take a class outside of your major. Push yourself outside of your comfort zone in order to broaden your world view, grow intellectually and make lasting friendships.
Allow yourself to become completely immersed in your goals. Whether you hope to run for Student Government, make the Dean’s List, join a sports team or earn the leading role in the spring play, focus and dedicate time to studying, training and rehearsing in order to make those dreams a reality.
Needless to say, don’t forget to carve out time for friends. Try not to get caught up in the competitive nature of college. You’ll find that “Pit-sits” with your hall mates, long walks through Reynolda Gardens, snowball fights on Manchester Plaza and post-party pizza at Zick’s will make for the most joyful memories.
Lastly, I’m willing to bet many of you were Valedictorians, team captains, thespians and Student Government presidents. Whatever your stage, I can imagine you were among the best and brightest at your high school and many of you may be fortunate enough to have not yet faced rejection.
Wake Forest proudly boasts its impressive #27 national ranking, so it comes as no surprise that your peers will challenge you. Do not be discouraged if things don’t work out immediately; everything will work out eventually. Sometimes the word “no” simply means “not right now.”
In this issue of the Old Gold & Black, our staff has compiled a comprehensive guide to assist you on your journey through orientation and into freshman year. Our staff includes students from different interests and majors, — Greek, non-Greek, business school students, humanities majors and more — so this guide should give you a sweeping view of freshman year at Wake Forest.
You’ll find advice on everything from roommates, to tailgating, to campus safety. Read about how to handle homesickness and whether or not Greek life is for you. We’ve even included a dictionary, so you can keep up with the campus slang.
Congratulations on your acceptance, and welcome to four wonderfully challenging and immensely fun-filled years. College is a time to figure out who you are and who you want to become, so each journey will have its own unique path. Wear your black and gold proudly and believe in yourself every step of the way.
I look forward to seeing you around campus. Welcome to Wake Forest.
Class of 2017