Leaving Humboldt State University

The following is inspired by an essay I read from a student, Marina Keegan, who graduated from Yale and tragically passed away a few days later. Her essay, The Opposite of Loneliness, clearly depicts the way I feel about leaving Humboldt State University.

I remember the day I first came to Arcata, it was the weekend right before school begun.

I walked into Humboldt State scared and I leave Humboldt State scared. I was scared coming in because I didn’t know if I was making the right choice and now I’m scared because I feel that I made the right choice. I’m scared that maybe I don’t have all the knowledge I need to pursue my passion of making a difference in people’s lives.

I’m scared to leave this community we have here as students. A group of people that give us a sense of belonging because in this community we are in it together. We understand each other. We understand our struggles. Our struggles of being students. Our struggle in trying to figure out the rest of our lives. We understand our insecurities. Our insecurity of not knowing if we have made the right career choice. The insecurity of where do we go from here after we graduate.

But for those of us who do feel this way, it is not fair to put this kind of stress on ourselves. I remember that right before leaving Southern California, I was scared because I didn’t know if I was making the right choice and I was scared to leave my community, my group of friends which I shared so many things in common. Scared as I was, I made the choice to leave that community and here in Arcata I found a new community. I’ve kept in touch with some friends within that community that I left and others, I only talk to when I visit.

Leaving Arcata doesn’t mean leaving my community. Physically? yes I am. But I do hope to keep in touch with those that have made a difference in my life as well as those who I have made an impact on. I leave Humboldt State scared to enter the “real world” just as scared. But I won’t let that stress fool me. For in the real world, I will find a new community where we are in it together. In our struggles and in our insecurities.

It is easy for life to get in the way sometimes. I hope that for us who do have that hope to inspire others and the belief that some of us have that we indeed can make a difference in this lifetime, that we don’t forget that feeling. The hope, the faith and the belief that there are so many things that are possible. That even though life does get in the way, I hope that we keep sight of that hope, faith and belief.

Governor Stevenson (Illinois: 1949-1953) said it well to graduating students. And I repeat it here. After we throw our caps in the air, as we take those final steps out of HSU as graduates, after all the graduation celebrations, and even after life gets in the way: “when you leave here, don’t forget why you came.”


News Brief 469: Childhood Hunger in America

Writer: Carmina Vital

Date: March 30, 2014

USA Today published an article by Mary Bowerman on March 28, 2014 that addresses America’s epidemic on childhood hunger. The article in intended to bring awareness to our communities that we have children going to bed hungry and going to school hungry and that there is something that can be done to help reduce childhood hunger. According to this article and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 5 children are hungry. That is about 16 million children in the United States. These are not children living in the streets, these are children who live in a home but their homes are considered food insecure. Many children don’t speak up about their hunger because hunger has a social stigma associated with it. It is emotionally shameful to speak up about being hungry when we live in a land where anything can be at our reach. The article promotes Hunger Is campaign which its goal is to help alleviate this epidemic. The campaign is raising funds through hungerls.org and the campaign will kick off at Safeway Grocery Stores beginning April 1, 2014. The funds will be disbursed to help fund for school breakfast throughout the country.

There was a time when I have been watching television and a commercial comes on about childhood hunger in another country. I have been tempted to pick up the phone and make a donation. A dollar a day, a dollar a week, or a dollar a month. Which ever one I prefer and I will be helping the hungry children be a little less hungry. I always thought that in this country you couldn’t really go hungry, not like the children in other countries. Then I declared my major: Child Development. There I learned some of the issues that are affecting our children in the United States. Issues such as childhood hunger.

Childhood hunger is an important issue because there are some people who are unaware of how hungry some of our children in American are. While there is people donating to other countries, those people could be donating to help children in our own country, in our own state, our own city, maybe even our neighbor. Hunger is not as noticeable in this country because the person going hungry could be our neighbor. Just because they have a home does not mean they have food on their plates. I believe that we should be advertising more of our own country’s hungriness than those of others. At least make our communities aware of what can be done to help. Even if it just a dollar a day, a week, or a dollar a month. Anything helps.

Article can be found at: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/03/28/viola-davis-child-hunger/6962841/