I finally accepted that a new school year had started when I realized that, whether I liked it or not, I had to go to the library to finish a reading assignment. It had been about four months since I actually had to study in the library, and as I walked through the main door and onto the main floor, a rush of memories immediately came flooding back: stacks of annotated books piled up on my desk, ridiculously large cups of coffee, and piles of hastily scrawled notes scattered over my workspace and spilling onto the floor. I had officially begun my junior year at the University of Portland, and I couldn’t have been more excited.
To start things off, I guess it would help if I told y’all a little bit about myself; I’m a junior from Gig Harbor, Washington, and I’m currently working on a double major in English and Philosophy (along with a History Minor), and I’m starting some preliminary thesis research on Ulysses, James Joyce’s imposing (and admittedly deranged) masterpiece. I’m especially excited about this project because next Spring I will be traveling to Galway, Ireland to study for a semester, and I am excited to get to know the Irish culture before I take off on this incredible adventure. I also love the outdoors, so I always try to find some time to escape from my academic responsibilities and to participate in the University’s Outdoor Pursuits Program, a club that focuses on focuses on camping, hiking, backpacking, etc, etc. In fact, I just signed up for OPP’s four-week rock climbing workshop, and I can’t wait to get out to start exploring the cliff sides of Oregon. Other than that, I’m a pretty average college student, and I enjoy all the usual college diversions: hanging out with friends, drinking coffee, watching soccer games, putting homework off until the last possible second, running through the sprinklers on the Academic Quad at four in the morning, sitting under a tree and reading a book, dancing at one of Portland’s many concert venues, riding my bike to Voodoo donuts on Friday night, and generally being young and irresponsible and full of life.
So, in other words, I can’t wait to get this year started. For these first couple of weeks, I’ve been catching up with old friends, getting to know a few new ones, and trying to stay sane as the homework and responsibilities pile up. Also, I had the opportunity to work at Orientation Weekend this year, since I’m a Freshman Workshop Leader, and I get the privilege to work with a great group of freshmen during the first half of the semester. Other than that, all I have to do at the moment is sit back and enjoy the beautiful onset at autumn and everything that comes with it.
Also, I should probably finish that reading assignment at some point.