Dear Future Gardner-Webb Student,
I don’t know if you’re as nervous as I was when I was in your shoes. Maybe you’re like me, and you know you’re going to miss your friends going to different colleges, your dog, and having Friends marathons with your mom. Or maybe you’re nothing like me, and you’ve been eager to be on your own for years. Either way, Gardner-Webb is the place for you.
I still remember my first visit to Gardner-Webb in November of my senior year of high school. I was so behind – everyone seemed to have already committed to their dream schools, and here I was on my very first official college visit. I didn’t even know what my dream school would look like… until I stepped onto the Gardner-Webb Campus.
I know this sounds cliché, but I instantly felt like I was home. Everyone I came in contact with, from the student giving me a tour to the ladies in the cafeteria, were so kind and welcoming. The dorm rooms I saw looked comfy and lived in, unlike the regulation, barracks-type rooms I saw when I visited my friends at state colleges. I was drawn to the small class sizes (even for general education courses!) and the academic community of Gardner-Webb. I had made my decision before my family even got in the car to drive home, but I promised to keep my options open.
As it turned out, I only visited one other school (which will remain unnamed.) Let’s just say that a major highway ran straight through the middle of campus, and the student giving me a tour knew not just one but multiple people who had been hit while crossing the street. My parents suggested that I keep looking.
And that’s how I ended up right back where I started: at Gardner-Webb. Not long after my unfortunate second college visit, I received my acceptance letter from Gardner-Webb, and I knew that it was where I wanted to be.
Fast forward about nine months to move in day: I was nervous and already homesick. I didn’t know anyone, and I was a little scared to start making friends from scratch. But when I pulled up to the Boiling Springs stoplight with my car slightly too loaded down, I saw a group of students with signs yelling and welcoming me to college. And somehow, I knew that I was going to be alright.
My mom and me on my move in day in 2016. My dad and sister are in the background, completely distracted.
Now, I’m in my third year at Gardner-Webb, and I have a tight-knit group of friends, a challenging but rewarding major, and enough memories already to last a lifetime. I even met my amazing boyfriend here!
I was able to help out with New Student Orientation this year, and I got to welcome freshmen at the stoplight, just like the students I had seen!
Snow days on campus are lots of fun!
So, whether you’re ready to leave home or you’re still a little reluctant, take my word for it: Gardner-Webb University is ready to welcome you home.
Katie Furr, 2020, English Education student, lover of Jesus, chocolate, and ‘90’s sitcoms.