A Letter to a Future Resident: Revisited

An envelope with the text "A letter to a future resident: Revisited" in the center.

Dear Future Resident,

More than a year ago, I sat down and wrote the first letter to a future resident. I wrote that letter with hope and excitement for a year that never came. I wrote that for an experience those residents didn’t get; as we eagerly await those experiences to come again, I thought it was important to write another. This year, we are seeing more people having a first experience on campus than we probably ever have before. That in and of itself is enough of a reason to be intimidated to come to campus. Then you consider the added stressors of starting school again, or for the first time, meeting new people and exploring a campus you may never have seen. That stress and anxiety are completely understandable because new situations are hard. When you couple that with the challenging experiences of the last year, it feels beyond intimidating.

Last August, we welcomed an eager, excited and a slightly confused new class of Utah students. Some decided to try to maximize their experience and still live on campus, and some, despite being full-time students, have never set foot on campus. Now as we welcome yet another class of eager, excited and slightly confused new students we have to confront a reality: for many whether or not this is truly their first year, this will be their first year. At this point in time, there are so few of us that have spent more than a full year at the U, so the student and resident experiences are bound to change.

When I first moved to campus, I was an eager, excited, and slightly confused student, and three days later I broke my arm. I became an eager, excited, slightly broken and confused new student. Thankfully, my confusion went away quickly even though my arm took a few months to heal. By the end of my first week, not only had I met the friends I've talked to every day for the past three years, but I found my purpose at the U. A lot of us have felt lost and lacking purpose when we spent the last year trapped in a tiny little box in our sweatpants. It was the purpose I found that kept me going, but, for so many of you, you haven’t had the opportunity to find the purpose that drives you to move forward.

Beyond just my purpose at the U, I found my community, my passions and myself. I’m sure you have all heard that college is about finding yourself, I know that sound’s so cliche but it is true. Everything you imagine about going off to college can be true, it can be the best years of your life, it can be the place you discover your true passion or find the people that will change your life. It can be anything and everything you want it to be, you just have to walk through the door.

As you start your year, don't forget, we are here for you. If you need anything as you navigate this new and exciting year, don't hesitate to reach out to your Resident Advisor, Resident Director, area front desk or stop by the housing office.

Good Luck,

A past resident.

Sam Dalton
Outreach Housing Ambassador