Viewpoint: Baylor years fraught with obstacles are worth the payoff

By Amanda Tolentino

On Tuesday, I received an email from my University Parks community leader, saying a girl in one of her classes noticed we are already finished with 21 percent of

the semester.

It’s the third week into my senior year and sometimes I still feel like a wandering freshman. Every other day, I feel nostalgic about

my time at Baylor.

Looking back on my first semester, I realize how much I have changed since entering college. In high school I didn’t have to study hard to earn good grades or

be on the honor roll.

The hardest thing I remember doing in high school is writing my honors thesis. College, however, is a whole different ball game. Young and naïve, I thought I

could waltz right into my classes, do the bare minimum and go out at the same time.

I learned quickly this is not the case. After tearfully receiving my first D, I realized it was time to buckle down and find a new way to study. My roommates and the

Paul L. Foster Success Center were my go-to guides in amping up my grades.

The first semester was my worst, but as the cliché goes, once you hit rock bottom it only goes up from there. Well, it certainly did.

After some intensive self-assessment, talking to my BIC adviser and my parents, I realized it was time to change my major. Switching from anthropology

to journalism is a big change. I feared it would set me back financially and delay my graduation

timeline, but it was more important to do what I wanted. I found journalism to be challenging and thrilling. I am usually an overly shy individual. I am never the first to speak

in class even if I am sure of my answer. This past summer, I forced myself to up the ante, and I applied

for summer internships at the local Pflugerville Pflag and the Round Rock Leader.

Enjoyable, frustrating and rewarding are a few words that only

begin to describe my years as a Baylor Bear.

Amanda Tolentino is a senior journalism major from Pflugerville. She is a reporter for the

Baylor Lariat.