How many CRiners does it take to make a title?

Foreword: It literally took four of us to make that cringy headline.

I am sitting here in the commons of TCU on a 75 degree day in February and am absolutely amazed at where I have been placed. This place and the people in it have changed my world in ways I never could have imagined in a matter of months. The faces I saw for the first time on move in day have become a family to me, laughing and crying on my dorm room floor. The grass I sit on now as I write this post was recently filled with a community full of people gathered to celebrate the Christmas season with the amazing tree lighting tradition. The walk to class that started out as a walk through a random crowd with one familiar face from frog camp every hundred strangers has become a walk seasoned with faces of people I know from all different interactions, each on their way to pursue their own path. So now here I sit with my toe dipped in the water of this incredible place I am starting to call home, and I look at others who have spent three or four years here and truly embody and steward what TCU is.

Many of these people are members of the Cultural Routes trips, people animated with love for life, full of personal assurance, exhibiting leadership qualities, and modeling how to pursue personal passions in a community. I believe their understanding of world cultures is one reason why they have the ability to add to the spirit and culture here at TCU. The reason I want to go on this trip is because by delving in to all that this University has to offer, TCU has blown all of my expectations out of the water. I am filled with joy at the thought of experiencing the cultures of Germany, Switzerland, and Italy amidst the culture of TCU, and I hope to gain the confidence understanding, and ability to add to the community in which I have been placed.

I am most excited to explore Italy because of the beauty of the landscape. I love adventure and the outdoors more than anything, and I am excited to see a different part of the world each new day! I hope the trip personally challenges me to learn about myself and about the world and to grow in both confidence and in humility. I hope to gain a broader understanding of the world and my place in it. I cannot wait for the relationships I will form with the other members of the trip and to really understand the deep connection past members share. I am nervous about getting lost because I always get lost, but I like to go with the flow so I hope to make memories in the meantime! I like to keep expectations low in life and be surprised, but I can not help but have high expectations for this trip which also makes me nervous. This blog post is the start of my voicing of my hopes and expectations, and I cannot wait to see how my personal voice develops throughout this incredible experience.