“Not like the others”

My whole life, I’ve been told who I am going to be. How life works, how to act and thrive. I don’t particularly like following the path already laid for me, clearing my way in life. I have succeeded and failed all on my own, and I’m proud of that. A burnt-out gifted student is a label they put on students like me. People like myself who flew through the early years of the school received excellent grades only to plummet later. That was the first time I felt like I wasn’t good enough. Growing up in Hilton, a small town in Rochester, NY, it’s easy to blend in with everyone else.

Going into college, I was worried. I chose Geneseo because of the inclusivity and passion for their students. In the past, I’ve had bad experiences with the facility and staff of my old schools. I was nervous about keeping up and maintaining the status I worked so hard to keep. But I realized that some teachers don’t care about your success but your understanding. For the first time, I realized teachers wanted me to understand the lessons and have expressed to me many times that they are willing to provide extra assistance when needed. I learned that I don’t need to prove myself here, that I don’t need to be the best at everything, especially if it costs my understanding and passion for the topic. I’m so grateful to the professors at Geneseo and their passion for us students, and I’m so excited to learn more about myself and my learning through this new experience.

My past experiences at my old schools ruined my self-esteem and projected how the rest of my life would go. I thought it was over, that I had nothing else to work for, and I almost gave up. I felt defeated that I didn’t have anyone who wanted to help me in the way I needed it. I felt alone. Soon after, I met an amazing person my sophomore year, and he became a mentor and my go-to person for the rest of high school. He showed me that it’s okay to mess up and not be perfect. He taught me that applying myself and how high I could succeed. I owe everything to him. I am back to feeling that way right now, not knowing any other facility or other students. I feel alone, but these last few weeks have shown me that I have people who want to help me and stand behind me. Because of that, I know I will succeed and soar through my years here at Geneseo.

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