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this is Auburn

February 7, 2014

This morning my alarm went off at 5:33am (fun fact about me: I set my alarms to go off at random times instead of the typical 15-minute increments… you’re welcome to ask why, but I don’t have an answer for you). Typically on Friday mornings I’m off to the gym before getting ready for the day but this Friday morning was a little different.

Let me rewind a bit…

Last Friday I received an email to participate in a TALONS event on campus. The lady who emailed me said she desperately needed someone to give a tour of Spidle (where Interior Design is located) and tell the group about the interior design program and answer a few questions. With me updating my resume recently, I figured sure it would look great that I participated, why not? That afternoon a Auburn tour guide came by my office and deposited 3 high school seniors and their wide-eyed parents at my doorway and I got an hour to convince them we were the best program in the world.

So fast forward yesterday when I walked into a meeting with the Italy abroad director and a man connected with TALONS. What was in my head… same as last week, just this time it’s Italy related. No problemo. We sat down to the meeting and he asked if we were familiar with TALONS. Not at all. He then explained that those invited to participate in TALONS day at Auburn were the most outstanding high school seniors. The ones who Auburn had offered academic scholarships to. The ones who Auburn is begging to come be a part of our family because these folks are going to be the world changers.

So that was shock #1 of yesterday’s meeting. Those three girls I talked to last week were rockstars (of course I started seriously going over what exactly I said to them . But shock #2 of the meeting was what really got me. I must have dosed off for a second because the next thing I heard was 3-500 students.


Come again?!

Yes 3-500 students.

Okay….. and what was it you’d like US to do again?! (it was “us” since my graduate school partner in crime was sitting across from me being asked to do the same thing)

We were being asked to represent the Joseph S. Bruno Study Abroad in Italy program at the opening ceremony to TALONS day. **GULP**

Once the shock wore off and questions were answered I wasn’t really thrilled about doing the event. Sure, speaking in front of people wasn’t as big of a deal as it used to be for me but still, 3-500 students and their parents?! **GULP**

This morning God humbled me several times, one specific instance was when the zipper on the pants I had picked out the night before refused to zip up so already running 3 minutes late I had to make a sudden wardrobe change… NOT an easy thing for a female to do.

Walking into the student center ballroom, we were greeted with this view **GULP**

photo 1All I was doing was answering two questions about the Italy abroad program but I felt beyond unprepared, ESPECIALLY after meeting the girl who would introduce me and hearing that she was a double major in finance and English and already had a job she would slide into after graduation in May. And then there were the other students who’s credentials stretched miles long and who’s speaking abilities were close to president of the U.S. level.

But I sat there, praying, allowing God to silence the ugly voices in my head. As I sat, I watched the video about Auburn, listened to a couple speakers speak about Auburn, and before you know it, I had chills all over my body and tears welling up in my eyeballs. Yes, they set this day up to entice new Auburn graduates so playing on heartstrings is what they were going for but for a girl who has lived in this community eight years, I was (figuratively) knocked to my knees. When those folks up there talked about all the great men and women this university has produced… omg, I’m one of them.

Here are a couple shots of my partner in crime and I on stage with two outstanding Auburn seniors….

photo 3

photo 2

photo 2Walking out of the ballroom we discussed how honored we both felt to have gotten to be a part of that…what an adrenaline rush it was to speak to many people and how thankful and proud we are to be Auburn alumni!

Since both of us were in business attire and both of us could use some more head-shots to potentially use for our websites, I suggested we bust into a little photo shoot right there in the middle of rush hour on campus. It was a blast, and I got this awesome shot of me…

DSC_0998…in front of the stadium where THIS happened just a few short months ago…

Okay okay, sorry, couldn’t help but throw that in! In all seriousness, today was a great jolt of perspective… cooped up in the basement of an ugly, old building, typing away on a thesis I think will never be finished, I forget that I’m part of something really wicked cool. I’m a part of a university who produces exceptional men and women… men and women who are incredibly proud to call Auburn home and the people a part of it… family.

Just recently I heard a funny quote… “You can’t soar with the eagles if you hang out with turkeys.”

I’m ready to graduate in May and I’m ready to soar with the eagles. Because I am an eagle. And being at Auburn, I’m surrounded by tons of other eagles. (of course I have to make a plug about how our mascot is NOT an eagle, it’s a tiger. Click here if you’re confused). Despite not being our mascot, Auburn has deep rooted traditions with eagles. So this verse has always had a very special place in my heart…

“But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles…” Isaiah 40:31

Honestly, I think anyone would be CRAZY not to pick Auburn as their college home. But then again, if they aren’t as sold out as the rest of us are, they probably wouldn’t fit in anyway!


xoxo, va

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