Baylor may never feel like home, and that is a good thing

By Holly Luttrell | Reporter

Do you feel like Baylor will never be home? It may not, and that is OK. You don’t have to feel at home at Baylor to belong here, because you do.

There is a lot to be thankful for at Baylor right now. Academic departments around campus are thriving, student life is active, our campus is growing rapidly and we are in a city that has been coming into its own over the past few years. We have a faculty and a student body that look out for one another and is committed to moving forward together. I am beginning my fourth year here and I can say that I have had the privilege of experiencing some of the best that Baylor has to offer. Even still, this place has never felt like home, and that is OK.

There is a pressure to make Baylor, and Waco by extension, feel like home in your time here. Fueled by #Baylorfamily hashtags and Instagram-worthy murals promoting the city, there is an intrinsic push to assimilate quickly. You might do this. If you do, wonderful. Enjoy it, because this place has so much to offer. But to those of you looking around wondering where you might have gone wrong, you didn’t. You belong here just as much as someone who was born bleeding green and gold.

It can be an isolating feeling to neverbe quite at home at Baylor. You can excel in your classes and get involved in every extracurricular on campus, but there is still a piece of you saying you belong somewhere else. Every person on campus arrives with a different story. We come together in a melting pot and there will never be a mold made for the university that fits for everyone. But there will be diversity, and that is a good thing.

You do not need to feel at home here in order to have a great and fulfilling Baylor experience. College is a short window of time in the grand scheme of things. But while you are here, remember that there are so many new opportunities to take advantage of.

Instead of striving to make Baylor feel like home, let’s strive to experience the unknown. Make yourself uncomfortable. Expand your horizons to people, food, ideas and ways of life that go beyond what you experienced before coming here. In doing so, you will have a chance to experience a much bigger world than what is contained within the Waco city limits. There will come a time when we do put down roots. We will find somewhere where we are comfortable and familiar with the way of life, but that does not have to be now.

It can be easy to feel like you are in the wrong place when Baylor does not feel like home, but you are not. You have something different to bring to the table, and much to learn from others. You may never be completely comfortable here, but you belong just the same.