Today’s topic was education, which seemed pretty general. Am I talking about everything I’ve learned, what I’m currently learning, about school…like, this is a really big umbrella. I could definitely talk about the importance of education and how it leads to knowledge and tolerance and acceptance, and a more understanding and better society in general- which is a very important and appropriate topic.
But instead I’m gonna talk about ACU.
My parents swore I would miss it when I left. I didn’t believe them. I knew I’d miss the people, the loving environment, the coffee shops nearby, my church… But I miss Abilene in a different way than I expected. I don’t think when I was a student there I truly understood the value of the education I was given.
Never once in my time at ACU was a told what to think.
I was a Bible Major at a conservative Christian University, but instead of being brainwashed, my mind was broadened so much by all of the new viewpoints of my professors, fellow students, and resources I was given. I came out of my education learning how to look at the facts I was given, research them for myself, and form my own opinions on the subject. I find myself everyday challenging my own opinions and the opinions of people around me, something I never would have done prior to college. I had never been introduced to a world outside of my childhood bubble, and I will forever be grateful that the first world I was introduced to outside of it was ACU.
Not only did ACU spend more time teaching me how to think than what to think, it also
gave me incredible opportunities to learn outside of the classroom. I got to spend four months of my life living in and traveling all over Europe because of ACU. I can call Oxford my second home, and tell stories of getting lost in Paris, rained on in Scotland, and sunburned in Spain. I can talk to you about the differences between American and British politics and lifestyles, and I can tell you about cultures and countries I would never have known existed.
I learned a whole new way to live and care for myself in Europe, and it’s an experience I still relive everyday.
I could spend all day talking to you about Europe,
(and I have – go check out these blog posts) but there’s one last part of ACU that I miss most: the community. I made some of best friends ever in Abilene, and I’m so glad I got to live with some girls who loved me so well. And most importantly:
I’m so glad I pledged Alpha Kai Omega.
I came back from my time at Disney missing the wonderful community I had there, and knowing I needed a home and family in Abilene to invest in. Yes I had my housemates, but I wanted to be part of something bigger; something that would have a more lasting impact on ACU. If you had asked me freshman year whether I would have ever pledged a sorority I would have laughed in your face and said no. Thank goodness God saw fit to change my mind. From the first Alpha Kai rush I could tell they were different than the other clubs on campus. I had found a group of weirdos who just wanted to hang out, eat food, and talk about Jesus. I figured out pretty quickly that this was the place I wanted to invest in.
Since my time pledging Alpha Kai I have grown deeper in relationship with my two best friends, made so many new friends, and had the pleasure of adopting the greatest little in the world (and the two greatest honorary littles in the world). I would not give up my time with these girls for anything, and even though I was never in a leadership position in the club I got so much out of every second I spend investing in it. I might not be thought of much by the club now, or next year, and probably not at all within three years, but I got to be part of something in my time on campus that has forever impacted me, and I hope will impact the club.
In all, even though there were definitely terrible, awful days that happened during my college career, I am so glad I got to spend it in a place as amazing as ACU. I’m so grateful for the people I met, the opportunities I was given, and the things I learned. Oh dear Christian College, I will always love you.