When I was looking for colleges during my senior year of high school, I was pretty nervous. This would be the place I would spend the next four years of my life, and I had always been scared I would make the wrong decision.

In fact, I was so meticulous about choosing the right school that I created an Excel spreadsheet that had a bunch of factors I was taking into consideration – one of the biggest being do they have the major I want? Obviously, you are going to college to get an education that will get you the job you want once you graduate, so it’s only natural for a major to be a big factor in your search. However, college is so much more than just choosing it based on your major of choice. What I have found since coming to college is that a major isn’t the most important thing. When I visited campuses, the biggest impact on my decision ended up being this: Does this feel like home? Will I be happy here all four years of college?  




Sure, you are at college for your education and ultimately your career. However, feeling at home is such an important thing when you are looking for, well, a home. Once I stepped on campus at George Fox, I immediately had the overwhelming thought of, “Yeah, I can be happy here.” I was welcomed with open arms when I stepped into the admissions office for Bruin Preview in 2017, and that feeling continued all the way through my visit. During the elementary education open house I attended, I could see that the professors truly cared about their students.  They were striving to get to know me within seconds of walking through the door. After my visit, I received a handwritten letter from one of the professors in the department asking how my senior year was going and letting me know that if I had any questions at all I should not hesitate to reach out to him.  




More often than not in life you will meet people and then never see them again, but at Fox it seems like once you meet someone they end up popping up in your life time and time again. The friend I stayed with during my visit ended up introducing me to all of his friends who ended up becoming my friends during my freshman year. I even ended up working with one of them at one of my internships! Every once in a while we reminisce about the times we first met at Bruin Preview or Scholarship Competition. This small community – people who you know and who know you too – is just a small way that makes Fox feel like home.  

Another amazing thing that keeps me coming back each year is the community built in the dorms. We call it “residence life.” I am currently a resident assistant (RA), so it is possible I am a little biased, but the second I moved into my dorm room in Gulley Hall my freshman year, I fell in love with the residential side of college. My RA greeted me at my doorway and we proceeded to have a 20-minute conversation. We had just met. Later that day, I met some of my best friends who lived just down the hall. I’ve found that there is beauty in being able to come home after a tough day and have a great group of friends to lean into. They’ve been the people who have really offered perspective and helped me through tough times.  




I have had my fair share of ups and downs since I got to college in 2018, but throughout my personal and academic struggles, I have had an amazing support system. Everyone from campus pastors, coaches, and community leaders in addition to my friends have been there to help me grow. I didn’t realize I’d have that.  

That is something I have found so encouraging during my time here as a student compared to the 14 or 15 years I have lived in my hometown. Don’t get me wrong, I love where I am from, but I can walk by someone I have known for a decade and not say a word to them. But at Fox, if I pass someone here on campus that I met last week, there is a good chance we will at least say hi, and maybe even just have a conversation on the quad.



I found my second family here in Newberg. That, to me, means way more than the major I’m pursuing. The late nights with friends, the knowing “hi’s” said across the quad, the meaningful conversations during tough times – all of that is what I’ll remember most and what it has meant to me to be a Bruin.

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