I recall very little about my college years. Very little indeed. I’m quite discouraged by this because this was an integral 5 years of my life and I feel like I have little to show for it other than a piece of paper that has done well to keep my employed as an engineer long enough to change my career.
I recall very few friendships from that point in time and very few memories. Maybe it’s due to my sleep apnea. Or the fact that I was more wrapped up in pursuing the other sex than my studies (for the most part). But I recall very little for whatever reason.
One memory that stands out above the rest was the week I moved onto campus. The week, for Marching Virginians and those auditioning, was known as Band Camp. Freshman and officers of the band go early for auditions, including learning to march as an “MV” and starting to learn the first halftime show. As if arriving at a school with over 25,000 undergraduate students isn’t overwhelming enough.
Band Camp is, in the words of longtime director, Dave McKee, an opportunity to meet 330 of your closest friends. I recall Bryan and Mike, and Nancy and Jenn, and Kelly, and Fade and a whole slew of other folks who welcomed me. And Chris my section leader (36 saxophones). And what it was like to eventually join (yes, me) a fraternity of about 15-20 guys. Pledge class of 7, only 5 of us were inducted – two of my closest friends at the time attended my wedding.
The campus and student body was huge. Four times the population of the town were I was raised. 20 times the population of my high school. And yet, I realize I did little to maintain many of those connections. I struggle with that. To this day.