Senior Goodbye: Lessons learned outside of the classroom


Anna Norwood

Seniors, we’re graduating – can you even believe it?

After my four years in Boone I can confidently say this place has shaped all of us into great people. I’m proud to say I’ll soon be an Appalachian State University alumna.

This school means so much to me and everyone here. The Blue Ridge Mountains have an effect on us and there’s togetherness here, more than any place I’ve ever encountered.Ana_web

From cheering together at our first Mountaineer football game to hammocking on Sanford Mall, we’re all connected by something bigger than the name Appalachian State University. This place has such a sense of home, and although a lot of us are moving away after graduation, we’re Boonies for life.

We’ve learned so much in our four years here, inside and outside of the classroom. I’m so grateful for my education and the people who have taught me so much.

I want to thank my journalism professors for pushing me to write pieces that I’m proud of. I want to especially thank my Media Studies professor, Jeff Goodman for inspiring me creatively and for teaching me some of the most important lessons I’ve learned thus far. Your classes have taught me to look at life in a wholesome way, and you’ve helped me be a more positive, loving person.

Find something you’re passionate about and pursue it. Whether it’s your major or a hobby, finding your niche is so important. Videography and photography have taught me to be curious and creative in everything I do.

At Appalachian, I’ve learned the ins and outs of journalism and how to produce videos, skills that I love and am proud of. But the most important thing that I’ve learned is that my relationships with the people around me are the most important things in life.

Take an interest in other humans and make an effort to learn about them. This school has introduced me to my beautiful family of friends. To all of you, I can’t wait to grow old together and keep our community strong, no matter where we end up.

So if you’re new to Boone, find friends who you can be yourself around. Surround yourself with people who love and respect you and your passions.

This town is special, take advantage of it. You can feel it walking down King Street during Art Crawl, hiking on the parkway, swimming at Hebron, going to Legends or simply walking through campus on a beautiful Boone day through a sea of friendly faces.

App State is a place to find yourself, to find a passion, to find a family and a community.

Am I excited to graduate? Definitely. Am I going to miss this place? Absolutely.

As I said before, once a Boonie, always a Boonie. This place is my home and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Anna Norwood, a senior journalism major from Chapel Hill, is a videographer.