There are a lot of endings happening right now, and as a result, I am having a lot of feelings right now. To process those feelings in typical Gill fashion, I'm going to close out my time on the School of Ed blog by writing a list of things I'm grateful for.
- My cohort. I'm convinced that no one gets through grad school alone, especially when they're studying an emotionally intense subject like counseling. My cohort is made up of 30-something of the most kind, thoughtful, loving, silly, earnest, and dedicated people out there. These are the kind of people you can call at 1 AM and will be by your side at 1:15. They're also the kind of people who try their hardest not to roll their eyes when you put High School Musical songs into a class presentation. Out of everything I've experienced in the past two years, I feel the most grateful for this ride-or-die team of counselors. #gotribe
- The professors. I've been guided and mentored by some of the best counselors in our field over the past two years, and each interaction I've had with these professors has pushed me a little step closer to who I want to become. Memorable moments include running late to class and racing my professor to get to the classroom door first, wanting to steal another professor's adorable dog, and learning how to protect myself from a cassowary attack from a third professor. Beyond being top-notch professionals, these professors are serious, they are fun, and they are seriously fun.
- The doctoral students. As a master's student, we are mentored, taught, and supervised by our program's doc students. They have become indispensable supports over the past two years. I honestly can't count how many times I've ran into a doc student feeling overwhelmed or worn out or anxious and walked away feeling SO MUCH BETTER. The doc students are crazy dedicated to helping us – one even met with me multiple times throughout the semester when I wanted some extra supervision. I don't know how they do everything they do, but they're the kind of people you look at and think, "I want to be like them when I grow up."
- The building. Over the past two years, I have spent anywhere from 20-40 hours a week in this beautiful palace of learning, and I have come to love it like a second home. Need a shower? We got you. How about a study break? There's a courtyard for that. Some alone time? Go hang out in "introvert corner." Coffee break? Our café has free samples almost every day. I will truly miss this building and all the memories I've made in it.
- Finally, Williamsburg. Oh Willy-burg, I did not expect to love you so much. From seeing colonial actors in full garb at the grocery store, to open mic nights at Aroma's, to festivals galore in Colonial Williamsburg, to endless free samples at The Peanut Shop, to free birthday dinner at Blue Talon, to the Target located dangerously close to my apartment, to the best running trail I'll ever live near, to the secret pond and trail across the street from my apartment, to the coolest playground ever where I walk my dog every day, to College Creek and so many memories of deep discussions at the beach after sunset, you were FULL of unexpected joys. You have been a wonderful place to spend the past two years.
Thanks for reading and for following along for the past two years! Here's to two years full of adventures and a future full of even more.