When I was finishing up my time as a student at Montgomery County Community College, I was considering several colleges in Philadelphia. But as I was applying, someone suggested that I check out Arcadia University. At the time, Arcadia wasn’t on my mind.
While, yes, I did have some doubts—with Arcadia being a private university, it can be more expensive than some other colleges—I weighed my options with my family, and ultimately chose to attend Arcadia because it would be financially sound for me to commute. I also wanted personal relationships with my professors, and was looking forward to seeing what the Media and Communication Department was like. I was very satisfied to learn that the department was equipped with the latest technology and programs, allowing students to learn and create video projects.
When I first stepped onto Arcadia’s campus, I had the mentality of a community-college student. I was very quiet, waited until the last minute to complete assignments, and skipped classes sometimes. I quickly learned that there was a huge difference between Arcadia and community college, and suffice it to say, I did not do as well my first semester as I should have. But, luckily, I did not have to repeat any classes.
This was due, in part, to another aspect of Arcadia that I fell in love with: the helpful faculty and staff, who seem as though they like their jobs. Not many professors I have encountered elsewhere have the same passion for teaching as the group of professors that I have had in my two years at Arcadia. Most professors are required to have office hours, but not required to go above and beyond, i.e. giving you their personal contact information and telling you to contact them anytime—and meaning it. Most professors here know you by name. You have that personal connection with them. If it was not for easy access to my professors, I might not have passed some of my courses. Professors at Arcadia would rather see you succeed than fail.
I also have learned a lot about myself while at Arcadia. Being a minority, it was surprisingly easy to find community, because there is so much diversity on this small campus. The acceptance that students gave me was exceptional. With all of the racial tension that occurs on college campuses, it is gratifying that Arcadia is known for being an accepting campus where lifetime friendships are made, no matter your ethnic background, beliefs, etc. One of many things that I will miss about Arcadia is the fact that I was always able to be myself.
Heading toward graduation, I feel that I’m prepared with the tools and knowledge to succeed in my field. Since entering Arcadia, I’ve learned that you cannot just sit back and expect to pass with little work put in. I am motivated to work harder than before.