Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Best of BYU 2017


I am graduating!!! Oh my goodness! I seriously can't believe this is real life.

Nevertheless it is true. My time at Brigham Young University is coming to an end, and I am feeling the full spectrum of possible emotions. I am SO excited for my exciting plans to move to NYC and all of the wonder my future has to offer. I feel supremely blessed to get to live out one of my lifelong dreams doing what I love. (thank you so so much Heavenly Father!) And yet.... somehow my heart aches a little to leave this wonderful life I have hear. BYU has become my home, and I am forever grateful for the experiences and opportunities it has given me. Here are some top 10's of my time here at BYU.

Top 10 Memories:

10. On my first weekend here in Provo a giant group of Freshman decided to go jump off a bridge in Lehi. Stupid, I know. But soooo fun. Haha at the end of the night we got back into a random freshman boy's car, and right when we drove away he crashed it into a giant cement block down a small hill. (How this happened is still a mystery.) When we started going down the hill toward the block, another stranger in the car yelled "weeee!" Nessa, Sav and I laughed so hard I thought we were going to pee our pants. Which is rude. I know, but it is a memory I will never forger.

9. I had a really rough day at school my junior year. My brain was struggling to think through lyme disease and I was feeling fed up. Madeline Woods spotted me crying and brought me a candle and a note when she hardly knew me. It meant more than I can say at the time.

8. Walking around campus with my IV pole. My college experience was certainly different than most.  Would I change it? Yeah probably, lyme disease stinks. But oh those funny memories of people staring at me are pretty awesome.

7. One time in my Doctrine and Covenants class we were covering Polygamy in the early Church. One student in the class was unaware of how many wives Joseph Smith had. When the teacher told us, the girl immediately spoke up and said. "That's disgusting!" A few students in the class gasped or snickered, rolling their eyes at the girl who was working through her faith. Our teacher stopped the class and said simply. "Enough. Polygamy is an uncomfortable subject. We should all probably feel uncomfortable as we first learn about it. Be respectful as we each come to work through our testimonies and understand God's plan." This moment left a huge impact on me for many reasons. One: it is 100% ok to ask questions. In fact, it is necessary. Two: Never judge someone for being at a different place in their testimony than you. Give everyone the opportunity to discover the truth for themselves in their own timeframe. Belief is not easy, be kind to one another and yourself.

6. ASSASSINS! This was the most intense ward activity I have ever participated in at the Isles, and let me tell you, it was the best! My roommate Carly Case wore a wig to school. For months after we found spoons in our cars and bags and crevices of our apartment. Oh how I will miss the Isles and the crazy things we did here. Heaven bless Michael Sorenson for planning the best ward activities ever.

5. One time, I had a C in Marriage and Family Prep. Now if you go to BYU, you're cringing for me right now. Brother Dorius's class is known for being about the only easy class you can take here. And yet my brain could not retain anything. I was thinking through brain fog and everything felt impossible for me. I went and spoke to my professor and he said, "What kind of religion professor would I be if I did not help you?" I finished with an A. Thank you Brother Dorius for being merciful. It left an impression on me.

4. The best date I ever had in Provo was a group date my roommates and I had in our apartment. (Go figure lol) We put twinkly lights up and made a fort out of our living room. We had a projector up and lived in a fairy tale. To this day we talk about how that was one of the best days any of us have ever had. Something about your best friends being all together under twinkly lights is just magical. One of the couples there that night got married, and the other three broke up over the following month.


3. So You Think You Can Dance. Man that was awesome. I will forever be proud of myself for the time I made it to the last round in Vegas while simultaneously battling a relentless and painful disease.

2. One day in my intro to women's studies course, a student stood up and told her rape story. Over the course of the class four more students told of their rape stories. We came to learn that over half of the class had been sexually assaulted in some way over their lifetime. (And that is just the women who spoke up.) This is where my passion for women's rights was born. We cannot be apathetic. A women's movement is necessary.

1. Covering the final Presidential debate in Las Vegas. Holy moly I have never smiled so big as I did when NBC shared my story on their breaking news. Ahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!! The first time I broke news. Like actually broke the news before anyone else had it. I am smiling now just thinking about it. Thank you BYU for giving me the change to cover such a massive moment in American History. Good or bad, it was a moment to be remembered.

Top 10 Most Influential People:
10. Ty Mansfield - D&C teacher mentioned above. He is so open minded and smart. Take his class!

9. Denise Snyder - My first women's studies professor. On the first day of class she said, "I am a covenant keeping member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and I am a feminist." I was sold right then and there. TAKE HER CLASS!

8. Center Stage - Students, teachers, parents, and mentors. Center Staged saved me at an impossibly difficult time in my life. Thank you for letting me stay close to my passion when my health no longer allowed me to perform myself. Thank you for letting me teach your brilliant kids. I love this place more than I can possibly say.

7. Lucy Scholl - I don't know what I would have done without you in my life these past few years. You are my soul sister. God put us together to push each other to reach our dreams. You're friendship is healing. Every needs a Lucy.

6. Sav - You are something else. Thank you for selflessly serving me. Thank you for helping me grow closer to the Savior. We make each other think, learn, and genuinely bring out the best in each other. There aren't a lot of people you can say that about. I will miss living with you every day. Love you sister.

5. Lizzie - We will be together for eternity. Aren't I lucky. Thank you for your light. You are sensational.

4. Kati Ellis- You are one of the reasons I am able to go and live my dreams. You have blessed me with your gifts and lifted me up constantly. I am so lucky to have you!!

3. Carrie Moore - I was told once that women need to have successful role models to look up to in order to achieve their dreams. Thanks you for being that for me. Thank you for believing me and for constantly encouraging me. Someday when I am living out my biggest dreams, I will look back to the time you told me that I could make it, and know that you are a big part of how I got there.

2. Parents - You are everything. Thank you for financial, emotional, spiritual and every other kind of support you can think of. I love you.

1. Christ - "Nevertheless the Lord God showery us our weakness that we may know that it is by His grace, and Hi great condescensions unto the children of men, that we have the power to do these things." - Jacob 4:7

- American Women's History (Take it from Rebecca DeSchweinitz
- English 312 (Persuasive Writing with Nicole Wilkes Goldberg)
- First half of the New Testament (Take it from Stanley Johnson)
- Advanced Print Reporting (Take it from Carrie Moore.)
- Any acting class from David Morgan

Number 1 thing I have learned about myself:

You can accomplish the impossible with God's help and a whole lot of grit.

I love you BYU.


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