In the first issue of the year, we welcomed the Class of 2016 to our campus and used the metaphor of packing to describe how to best begin life at Trinity.
Now, in our last issue of the year, we’re saying good-bye to the Class of 2013, and are once again going to employ the metaphor of packing. In our last four years here, we’ve collected a lot of new baggage. Along with enough free t-shirts to fill a TU walk-in closet, lifelong friends and a few extra pounds (Thanks, Mabee), we now have a college degree.
And while it may not feel like it’s worth a lot right now (what’s a job?), this degree is worth more than the $200,000 we paid for it. As members of the Class of 2013 point out in their senior columns, our degree also includes an education in love (Page 22) and change (Page 14), and has given us the skills to do things like make hard decisions (Page 10) and find the best drink deals in San Antonio (Page 13).
Finally, we’ve realized this experience really isn’t about the degree. Long after we’ve hung our diploma on the wall or shoved it under our bed, and long after we’ve accepted jobs that don’t really relate to what we studied, the memories and real knowledge we’ve gleaned from Trinity will live on.
Our very own Arts & Entertainment editor, Brian Westfall, wrote one of the best pieces in this issue (Page 10). Titled, “Two words: be awesome,” Brian reflected on the loss of classmate Alex Reinis who passed away while studying abroad in the fall of 2011. Brian’s moving account highlights some of the biggest themes underlying all of our experiences: the sense of community and how much we care about one another.
As you depart Trinity, take that feeling with you, cherish it and maybe even consider giving back in the form of a senior gift that goes entirely towards a scholarship for an incoming first year (see Page 22). Leave behind the fear of failure or inadequacies. You’ve accomplished great things, Class of 2013, and you will continue to do so outside of our beloved Trinity bubble. Leave behind all of your preconceived notions of what you should be doing, how to please your parents and how to be successful. No one knows the secret and your plan will change often.
So pack light, Class of 2013, so that you may go farther and experience more than what you already have (but remember to come back and tell us about your adventures), and think heavy as you go forth and use your experience here to analyze and contemplate the world around you. We wish you the best of luck!