Saying goodbye to IU South Bend

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By: John Griffee


As I approach the end of my time at IU South Bend, I feel that I can look back in a positive light at the experiences that this college has held in store for me. In reflection of my time studying at this college, I can say that one of the greatest things that our campus has to offer are the people. 

Having previously come from another ‘commuter college,’ I expected to see a level of disconnection from the students here, similar to what I saw at my first college. Instead of finding a void, I found a community that makes IU South Bend what it truly is: a wonderful campus. 

Often we think of college as a furthering of education, aiming to prepare ourselves for the workforce, however looking at college that way would be wrong. College does not just prepare for employment, but life as well. College teaches us to take risks and jump at experiences and opportunities we might not usually engage with. One such opportunity that I will never forget has been the chance to write for The Preface.

Writing has always been something I have gravitated to in life. This semester I will finish my minor in creative writing and shortly my major in communication studies the following semester. Approaching a position with The Preface for credit, I originally hoped to be able to write short stories or stick towards my comfort zone of writing. When creative writing was off the board, I gravitated to writing what I knew and felt passionate about: hiking. 

In my time as a columnist, I have covered all sorts of parks and wildlife topics over a year and a half. It has been one of the best opportunities I have ever had the grace of running into and I would encourage anyone who does not see themselves as writers to take a chance on. Writing allows us to share our stories and experiences, connecting with each other.

My first few articles I will admit were not the finest piece of journalistic writing, but with time and a growing number of pieces published, I found a home on the staff. Spending time with the group that comprises The Preface has been one of my best experiences during my time here at IU South Bend. 

It would feel wrong to write this farewell without acknowledging the people who matter most: the readers. When I began writing my column series A Walk in the Woods, my goal was always to impress my love for nature upon others. Even if just one person took a hike at a park I covered as a result of an article, that is enough to satisfy me. 

Life in essence can be terrifying, chalkful of countless moments that dare us to jump into the unknown. We have the choice to stick to what we know and reside in our comfort zone or we can take that chance and await the future. More often then not, we choose to not take that jump, and in those moments we miss out on amazing experiences. 

If there is anything that people take from my Senior Goodbye, I hope it is that they take a jump. Had I known what my time would have been like on the staff, I would have lept much sooner.

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