Welcome Home, Class of 2016

With the semester coming to a close, writer Rhea Harsoor reflects on her initial confusion to a new bunch of students, loss of cherished upperclassmen, and her eventual acceptance.

I never quite understood the separation between the sophomores and upperclassmen until this past month when the initial wave of excitement that accompanies having one’s very own sophomores finally passed. At first, the new class struck me as a nuisance; unfamiliar faces had taken over the building where I could once recognize every face. Who were these naive high pitched minion children and why did they think they could replace the seniors we had grown so fond of? No one, especially not this new class, could replace our most recent IMSA alums. We had taken the time to get to know them and learn from them and just as suddenly as it all began, they were torn from us, and we were handed a list of 230 alien names that would soon match a face in the class of 2016. We were expected to reach out to these new students and accept them as members of our community, the community that had already grown so tight knit before these intruders had entered our world.

When I returned in the fall, I was frazzled. I expected at least to recognize everyone’s faces, but I was thrown a curve ball. I hadn’t taken into account the loss of the previous class. A whole 200 faces, I would most likely never see again (besides the occasional Facebook picture stalk session) had just disappeared, escaped to college, never to return. It was no wonder  I refused to spend the extra time necessary to familiarize myself with these new students; I blamed them for the loss of my precious seniors. Instead, I made excuses and blamed the demanding rigor of junior year for my lack of time, and ignored the swarm of new faces whose biggest worry was studying for that next Moving and Learning quiz.

As first quarter progressed, I began to find new seniors to take my troubles to, and the need to . I was surprised to find they had troubles I could relate to. Seven check and internet shut off had not disappeared, and although as a junior, I had now been freed of the struggle of rushing back to check after sports practice and dinner, there were some of us that had to make the hustle to get dinner before check and the ominous study hours that accompany it. To my horror, I began to empathize with the newbies and helping them finish last minute problem sets and practice Class Club speeches. I found that although they often disrupted the quiet hum of students napping in the Old Cafe with new found enthusiasm, yet to be pummeled with the onslaught of late nights and essay writing, I didn’t mind them being here, and as reluctant as I am to admit it, it’s almost nice having to get accustomed to the fuzzy faces in the hallway, and while I miss my seniors dearly, we can all agree the new class has now found a home away from where they had previously nestled under the U-Bench outside Sodexho.

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