University of Oregon

Term Recap, Looking ahead

Peter E.

March 13, 2010 - 6:35 PM

It's been a quick term, reflecting on the last ten weeks, as I take a break from my thesis and NCAA basketball to write this. It's also ridiculous to think I only have on more term of college left. In twelve short weeks I will be graduating college and headed straight to Phoenix to begin summer training to prepare me for teaching. I have a feeling it will go by quickly.


I feel very strange with the situation I'm in now. I have a very limited amount of time left in Eugene, and I want to spend as much of it as possible with my friends, finding new things in the city, enjoying my favorite spots, and learning as much new things as possible. Those are the things I really prioritize because soon they will be gone. However, I also need to write a thesis, pass a couple more classes, and work several jobs. Thus, there's a really difficult balance between work and play.


The situation is complicated more because most of my friends are juniors (like me, in their third year of college), but I'm graduating a year early. Thus, their schedules are much more flexible and filled with fun. It's hard to always partake in their fun, though, because I have a lot of commitments, and in several months I will be a role model to many impressionable young minds (which is a really scary thought). I am up to the challenge, but it is hard to mature or see myself mature when my surroundings and the ridiculousness of the college atmosphere don't always seem compatible with the life I will be living less than a year from now. In short, I'm being forced to grow up pretty fast.


Finally, I will really miss the academia side of things as well. I have really been immersed in bioregionalism and sustainability the last couple terms, and I wish I had found it sooner. It doesn't make me regret my career path or educational path, but I definitely would love to stay in academia forever balancing theoretical discussion and research with actual hands-on activism and sustainability projects (I suppose I could make a career out of that).


Although I will soon leave this all behind, it's hard not to look ahead as well. Studying bioregionalism has really given me a sense of rootedness in place, and so I feel split between where I am in Eugene and where I will soon be in Tulsa. I spend a lot of time researching Tulsa, trying to find cultural places of interest, outdoor ventures, and housing. Beyond the logistics of place though, I am beginning to think of my career as a teacher and how I can bridge together high school math with sustainability and interests that are relevant and important to our world. In this respect, I am extremely eager to move on to the next stage. Nonetheless, I again feel conflicted because I love where I am, and I feel extremely connected to Eugene, U of O, friends, and school. It's a really surreal time, and I'll enjoy it for the little while I have left.



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