I get my SFA ring on Friday. Like many other students and alumni, I will be able to participate in one of the best SFA traditions, the Big Dip. When I dye my hand purple and receive my ring that I have worked so hard for, it will not only showcase my commitment to this school, but it will also be a physical reminder that when life gets tough you can still come out stronger. 

I’m sure the thousands of students at SFA can agree college is very challenging. It’s even more challenging when you have all the odds stacked against you. As a first-generation college student pursuing a degree that my family didn’t agree on, I was almost destined to fail. Not to mention the countless personal struggles I have written several hefty columns about that almost cost me my college journey.  

These last four semesters have not been easy. Between working three jobs just to afford college and finding out my mom had breast cancer, I was constantly second guessing my choice to go to college. However, I always stuck around because I knew that all this struggle was going to mean something.  

Getting a chance to be celebrated and to share my accomplishments at the Big Dip ceremony will be so fulfilling. I am so excited to proudly wear my ring and be able to receive it in front of everyone that helped get me hereincluding my mom, who a year ago I didn’t think was going to be around for this.  

The Big Dip, as amazing as the celebration is, isn’t just about getting your college ring. It’s about showing off your accomplishments and letting people know that despite everything, you persevered. As a class of 2020 senior who didn’t get their own graduation or any form of celebration for their accomplishments, the Big Dip ceremony will be the first time I will be able to celebrate myself and all my hard work. I am beyond excited. 

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