Choosing IU: A Gut Feeling That Proved to be Right

Traditions and Spirit of IU during Welcome Week
Members of the freshman class cheer during Traditions and Spirit of IU on Friday, Aug. 21, 2015, at Memorial Stadium.

For many people, college is a pivotal point in one’s life. You’re finally moving out of the house, potentially leaving the state, and embarking on the adventure of a lifetime. It’s terrifying—truly, but also exhilarating and surreal at the same time. You’re going to meet incredible people, experience amazing events, and finally understand why college is what it’s all cracked up to be. For me, picking this magical place, full of potential, was simple. This is why I chose IU.

I always wonder how I ended up here. Was it fate, coincidence, or mere planning? In my mind, the perfect university was many things: academically-inclined, social, charming, and homey. After one sunny June visit I realized IU encompasses all of these characteristics and so much more. Growing up in the St. Louis area, I’ve become accustomed to Midwest charm—quaint mom-and-pop shops, friendly people, and fantastic food. Bloomington radiates this same warmth and appeal.

Academically-speaking, IUB has some of the best programs in the country. From the No. 2 nationally-ranked Jacobs School of Music to the highly respected Kelley School of Business, our academics are impressive. Personally, I was drawn to the newly-renovated Media School, which at the time was ranked No. 7 in the world—now it’s taken over the No. 6 spot.

Football Game at IU

Being a Big 10 school, our athletics are notable. Our football team attracts thousands and thousands of fans to Memorial Stadium every game day.  Despite our iffy record, there’s definitely truth to the saying, “Hoosiers never lose a tailgate.” Our No. 2 seeded men’s soccer team made it all the way to the national championship against Stanford last season. While attending these sporting events is inevitably exciting, nothing is comparable to Hoosier basketball (in my opinion). I didn’t know what pure pride and school spirit felt like until I was cheering on our 5x NCAA champions. The Simon Skjodt stadium bleeds cream and crimson, and the hype is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. There’s a reason we call the first showcase of the season “Hoosier Hysteria.”

As you probably know, one of our most noteworthy attributes is our gorgeous campus. The limestone buildings, iconic Sample Gates, and wooded trails allow us to be nationally recognized for having one of the most beautiful campuses in the U.S. In the summer and spring, red and white flowers bloom outside the gates. In autumn, the fallen leaves blow throughout campus reminding us that we’re lucky enough to experience four wonderful seasons. Every day when I hurry to class I always think to myself, “This walk will never get old.”

Sunlight gleams through the Sample Gates

Last, but certainly not least, culture and diversity is in abundance in B-town. Our beloved 4th Street is home to many ethnic restaurants ranging from Turkish to Thai. We also have students from all 50 states and over 130 countries worldwide. IU takes pride in hosting an annual CultureFest, which is a celebration of the cultural diversity here at Indiana.

As cliché as it may seem, I chose IU based on a feeling—multiple feelings actually. Feelings of joy, anticipation, and immediate comfort. My heart knew right away that this was the place for me. It was a gut feeling that proved to be right. As I’m transitioning into my sophomore year, I’m reminded every day that I’m in the perfect place for me. IU brings out the best in me, and in the end, that’s why I chose it to be my home.

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