In Being a "Second Year"

Amazing to think that I've already been in the program for a year.  With papers to write, conferences to present at and the number of other responsibilities asked of a doc student, the time here just flew! So much so, that summer came and went, as it always does, and when I found myself back here for my second year in the doctoral program, I could barely believe it.  The Counselor Education program here at William and Mary, has a cohort model, and the classes we take are ones that are shared with the cohort above us.  Last year, we were referred to as "First Years" and now everyone refers to us as the "Second Years."  May not sound like a big deal, but believe me, it is. 

Every semester, there's at least one class in which the second and first year cohorts share.  In these classes, the then "Second Years" were those who were always there for us to offer words of reassurance and wisdom.  They would often smile and shrug off the "small" concerns we, the then "First Years" had that seemed so large and looming then.  Interestingly enough, with mid-terms just around the corner, I now find myself in that role of mentor, offering similar words of comfort that were imparted onto me not so long ago.  It's an interesting mix of emotions and included in that is a lot of pride in what I have accomplished in my short time here.  Also included in that is gratitude, for all the support and kindness I've received from my peers and the faculty, because without it, I'm not so sure I would have been able to make it this far.  I'm a "Second Year" and it's not only a privilege in being able to claim that, but to be able offer support to my other colleagues in return.