For the record, I love Goshen College.
I wasn’t always so sure. I was sort of forced into coming here. I say “sort of” because, while I did make the final call, I experienced a significant amount of unintended pressure. My parents, my aunts and uncles, my grandparents and my great-grandparents all came to Goshen. They all told me I would love it, that I would be carrying on a marvelous tradition as the fourth generation to become a Maple Leaf.
At first I resisted, but I couldn’t fool myself when I said I’d go somewhere else. I always knew I would come to Goshen. But I’ve been surprised at the level of affection I feel for this small Midwestern campus.
Everyone’s college experience is unique, even at GC, and we all love it for different reasons, in different amounts.
For me, it’s the hordes of crazy squirrels that scavenge everywhere, the haze of light posts at night, the thrill of perfect acoustics on Sauder’s stage. I love the open connectors, the impromptu hymn sings, that bikes are the transportation of choice.
I love the soccer game cheers and midnight poetry readings and all the trees that turn fiery colors in the fall. I love the buildings so old they have ivy crawling up the windows. I love scaring people in library cubbies. I love every single train whistle outside my window (except when I’m running to lunch).
I love the Hour Afters and a new Record every Thursday and the Cloud Ten from Java and limitless soft-serve ice cream cones at the Rott. I love late-night hot tubbing at the Rec and the fountains that come on for 1/20th of the year.
But mostly, I love the people. I came for the people, for the sense of community. I truly believe that Goshen College is unique in the friendships that are formed. It’s an experience you can’t get anywhere else.
We come from scattered U.S. towns and from across the ocean, from right across the street and from a million miles away. No matter where we were born or what type of history we hold with the college, I believe that the types of people who choose to come to Goshen are the best of the best. The people will be what I remember when I’m handed a piece of paper at the end of these four years.
My dad came here in the 1980s and found a group of people he’s kept for the past 30 years. Now his best friend’s daughter is one of my best friends and I’ve found my own group of people that I want to stick with. I’d like to hope that the track record continues for us all—that the friends we make at Goshen College will be the ones we’ll have for life.
By Kate Stoltzfus