Penultimate: What a Christian Tradition exam taught me about community

It’s crazy to think about how quickly four years can go by. It almost seems like yesterday I was trying to figure out what I should do for college. Applying to different schools, taking SATs and ACTs all seems like a blur to me.

Four years ago at this time, I was just making decisions about where I was going to spend the next four years, and I’m really blessed to have been able to spend them here at ENC. The friendships I have formed and the memories that I have made will last for a lifetime. I’ve not only grown in my education and social life, but also in my spiritual life.

One of my favorite memories comes from freshman year. Julie Cameron, who was not only my roommate but also a childhood friend, was in Christian Tradition with me. My first semester I was honestly scared to death about the school work, and did not move from my desk until I finished it. For extra credit, I had written a paper that was due on the same day of an exam. The night before, I completed it and put it onto my “done pile” on my desk, and went to bed. The next morning, Julie and I got up and went to class to take the exam.

I reached down into my bag to get my paper and I realized I had left it on my desk. Fear sank in through my body and I tried to calm myself down, thinking, “Well, the professor seems nice enough; he’ll probably let me go get it really quickly.”

I wasn’t the only student who conveniently left my paper. The professor got overwhelmed and said that no one could hand in their papers after the exam. I was devastated; how could I have been so stupid to forget it? I was unable to hold the tears back.

Little did I know that my roommate had quickly taken her exam, run back to the room, and grabbed my paper. She brought it back and said to the professor, “You said that the papers had to be handed in before the exams, and she is still taking her exam.” The professor was surprised at first but he accepted the paper and ultimately was glad that it worked out for me.

I learned a couple of lessons that day. I know now to put my assignments in my folder and right into my bag, but I also learned how amazing this ENC community is. There were people coming up to me afterwards asking me if I was okay and making sure that I knew it wasn’t the end of the world if my paper wasn’t handed in.

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