Entering Iowa State last year as a freshman, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I knew I wanted to do the First-year Honors Program, and I was even more excited to live on an Honors floor. In fact, I had a feeling I knew exactly what being in Honors would be like: studious kids who kept to their own rooms, in bed every night by 11, unless there was extra credit due sometime within the next month… in which case bedtime could be pushed back until 11:30.
I had clearly been misguided by angsty teenage films about college.
Living on an Honors floor is a bit like living in a wildlife safari. Well, without the animal feces… or the animals… okay, it’s not really like living on a safari at all, but for all intensive purposes, let’s continue this metaphor so I can practice my Steve Irwin impression.
Here, we observe a pah-ti-cu-lah-lee large pack of Honors students native to Starbuck house. As you can see here, they each have distinctive markings, ranging from work-out clothes to pajamas, yet maintain their cohesiveness as a pack.
But seriously. I took this picture my first week as a freshman. Mostly, I just wanted to prove to Facebook that I was making friends away at school. What I didn’t realize at the time that this picture was evidence of what soon became a Starbuck tradition: Movie Wednesdays. I don’t remember what movie we watched, and I can’t remember what we talked about. I do remember Elisa painting her nails, and Robert baking cookies though. I remember Sarah Grace and Leishea were in sororities, and that almost all the guys were engineers. I remember that at one point there were so many people in the room, people had to sit on counters. Most of all though, I remember thinking how easy it was to talk to these people that I had only known for four days.
Safaris are full of different types of animals with different spots, stripes, and colors, as is Honors housing… if we substitute “animals” with “college students,” and “spots,” “stripes,” and “colors,” with “majors,” “hometowns,” and “preference between Star Wars and Lord of the Rings.” I was the only kid on my floor from Nebraska, and the only one in Political Science (a major the engineers give me grief about to this day). I love Dr. Who and Harry Potter, but I am also very much a “sorority girl.” I’m involved in ISU Democrats and the Catholic church here in Ames. And while I’m known for sleeping with my Ethics and Politics textbook, I’m guilty of reading too much fan-fiction online. There is no “typical” honors student. The beauty of honor housing though, is that there’s a place for everyone. After all, how boring would a safari be if it was just comprised of Axolotls (a rare breed of Salamander. I’d hate to visit a safari of just salamanders…)?
So no, we don’t go to bed every night at 11, but trust me, we try. We definitely aren’t quiet, nor do we keep to ourselves. We’re just a bunch of cheetahs and zebras and axolotls with an extra “H” on our transcripts, who, if you choose to hang out with, will become your new family.
Posted by Evie Sue