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Senior columnist reflects on her years at university

The time has come for this college student to put down her coffee, stop going to bars, stop eating Easy Mac and breaking into song at random.

That’s right, I’m graduating — but who am I kidding? I’ll never stop doing any of those things.

I feel a sense of relief, but also sadness by the fact that I’ll never again spend an evening watching Harry Potter with my roommates, raking and jumping into piles of leaves for fun, or spend a sunny afternoon at the river. After graduation, I’m headed off to work at the Grand Forks Herald, so real-life is going to hit me square in the face pretty quickly.

And I’m terrified.

It doesn’t help that as I write this, The Volante’s adviser Chuck Baldwin walked into the office and asked, “You still going to graduate?”

Of course I’m going to graduate! I’ve taken the Mass Communication department’s exit exam, handed in my portfolio and double-checked my grades. But I’m still worried — I’ve heard tons of horror stories about the university not letting people graduate. Not to mention I have about 20 pages worth of papers to write and hand in, most of which after I walk across that stage in the DakotaDome.

And on that note, why did the South Dakota Board of Regents think it was a good idea to have a graduation ceremony before a student even knows if they’ve passed all of their classes? Why does it feel like the University of South Dakota is going to find some loophole I haven’t jumped through and tell me I’m not going to get my diploma — about nine months after graduation, mind you.

Don’t get me wrong; I appreciate everything this university and its professors have done for me. It’s because of them I’ve had amazing internship opportunities, and it’s because of those people that I didn’t even think remembered me from high school talk about me and how awesome my summer at Custer State Park looked by the pictures I put on Facebook and ask me about the time I lived in California.

It makes me feel a little famous.

And so, in this last blog in the last issue of The Volante I’ll ever be published in, I have a few confessions. The only reason I passed Spanish 202 was because I chose a character that was drunk for the final presentation and just mumbled incoherently the whole time. I’ve never stayed for an entire football game. I don’t know the school song and I don’t care about any sort of rivalry with South Dakota State University.

One time, I told a particularly mean professor my grandma had died so that I could take a long weekend and go pheasant hunting with my family. Oh, and once I used my own hole-punch to fill out one of those cards and got myself a free coffee.

So long, USD.

Reach reporter Anna Burleson at [email protected]