Welcome back, Class of 2021! We are thrilled to reconnect with you as you settle into our non-traditional semester. Non-traditional: oddly enough, it is a word that offers me comfort and hope. It is a word that many of my loved ones have use to describe me throughout my life. Someone who can still pass within our more standard ways of work and life but is just off-the-beaten-path enough to offer fresh perspectives and keep life zesty. Orienting myself in such a manner has taught me a few things about what it means to step away from the expected.
When the cleaner paths that have been laid out for us (by ourselves or others) are no longer traversable we are forced to look inward and re-evaluate. We are invited to remember our values, to return to our most basic missions, and reassess our needs and goals. This process helps us reconnect with our north star so that we have direction as we forge new roads. If you pay close enough attention along the way, you may come to find something pretty magical. You may just discover this labor-intensive but self-constructed path to be better fitted for you than the original. And although struggle and fear often accompany each step, you begin to wonder if any of us were every truly meant to follow the neatly pre-designed road. You may even question if the traditional path ever actually existed. Suddenly, the world might feel a little less scary because you can’t fail when there is no standard to meet. The setbacks and obstacles along the way are just a part of the adventure. More importantly, you begin to trust your ability to creatively land on your feet and continue the adventure of becoming!
My hope for you this semester, Class of 2021, is that you fully embrace the blessing of non-tradition. You are not the same person you were when you started Loyola. How might you use this time to redefine and clarify your values and direction? What are the brave and creative steps you need to take to live authentically and with purpose? How can you maintain the relationships that have brought value to your Loyola experience? While some of this work must be done alone, it tends to be much more fun and meaningful in community. Continue to seek out those Loyola opportunities that will allow you to celebrate your accomplishments and prepare for your next steps. They are still happening! Here are some opportunities perfect for seniors:
1) Milestone Fair
· When you’re not sure what to expect or focus on during a virtual semester to stay on track.
· This virtual fair will help you stay on track with the important milestones of your class year. Get entered to win prizes, including international Air BnB Experiences, by participating!
· More details to come.
2) BMore Engaged
· When you still want to engage with your community in meaningful ways.
3) Senior Podcast
· When you're looking to #ShareYourStory or wanting to stay connected with your fellow peers in the Class of 2021.
4) Life After Loyola
· When you’re trying to figure out how to “Adult” after undergrad.
· Launch dates set for October & November
5) Loyola Votes
· When you need to register to vote!!
- Ashley Schantz