Huddled in my friend’s car, I closed the door before the rain got the interior leather any more wet than my soaking clothes already made it. “Here, check my phone,” she said. I snatched it up and typed in my email password, shaking from both the cold and nervousness. After a brief hesitation, I opened the email with the subject New York Arts: “Thank you for taking the time to apply for the New York Arts study abroad program for Winter 2013. Attached you will find documents pertaining to the decision made on your application.”
I tapped on the document link and waited the tortuous five minutes while it loaded. I’d applied to the New York Arts program earlier this fall quarter. Apart from Kalamazoo College’s study abroad programs, the college offers several study away programs available to sophomores and juniors in cities in the United States. The New York Arts program, as its name suggests, takes place in New York City and caters to the interest of students dedicated to the arts. My dream plan was to go to New York this winter and study writing and theater and next year go to Chile for six months. Now here I was in a car, trembling and clutching an iPhone tight enough to crack the screen, waiting to see if I’d be going to New York this winter.
I only read the first word: “Congratulations!” Have you ever seen one of those movies where the protagonist is so happy they run around in the rain pumping their fist, laughing and howling in excitement? That was me last Friday. I think it may have been an inappropriate amount of enthusiasm to be expressing in the Trowbridge parking lot and I probably scared more than a couple of people, but I didn’t care. I’d never been more happy. I’m one of five K students going to New York City this winter quarter to study what I’m most passionate about. I’ve been incredibly privileged with the amount of opportunities and support this college has given to me, but this one is by far the most exciting yet.