For any college graduate that loved their alma mater, returning to campus always feels a bit like coming home. Fond memories await around every corner and feelings of gratitude and satisfaction wash over you knowing you were able to spend your undergraduate years at such a wonderful school. This is exactly how I felt returning to my alma mater, Texas Christian University, last October (Go Frogs!). But just like returning home, not everything stays exactly the same while you’re gone.
TCU is in Fort Worth, Texas, and students jokingly call it “Texas Construction University” since there always seems to be multiple buildings being remodeled, destroyed, or built all at once. One of the major projects to occur while I was in school was the creation of all new sorority and fraternity housing. I was actually part of the last group of women to live in our old sorority house before it was torn down and I lived across the street from the new house being built (check out these videos of the process). Unfortunately, the new house was completed after I graduated so I missed out on getting to live in this beautiful new space.
When I went back to visit, I was awestruck at how different the fraternity and sorority housing looked. So much had changed in just a few months! The place I’d lived for two years and created so many memories in was completely gone. What was in its place was a gorgeous testament to the support the university gives to fraternity and sorority life. So, of course, I had to go on a tour. Even though it was a new space, when I was welcomed in with an abundance of hugs and excited greetings from my Sigma Kappa sisters, it still felt like home. As I spent time that weekend with my sorority friends, it felt like we had never left. Even if the place changes, or where you live changes, the connections and bonds you make can remain just as strong.
The reason I went back to Texas in the first place was for my Sigma Kappa grandbig’s wedding. It was my first time back to Texas since graduation and I had so much fun attending her wedding with fellow Sigma Kappa sisters. It was amazing to reconnect with sisters for such a special reason and continued to prove to me that Sigma Kappa is a lifelong bond. I feel incredibly lucky to be part of an organization that brings women together and creates a support network for life. I’m looking forward to a future of many more weddings, reunions, football games, and girls’ trips with my Sigma Kappa sisters.
I’m comforted knowing some classic campus icons will likely always remain intact (like the horned frog statue shown below and Frog Fountain), but I know the next time I go back to TCU, more construction will be completed and the campus as I knew it will be altered even more. However, I find it exciting to know all that means is more students will get to have even better experiences than I had. As long as I can come back and get some fantastic Tex-Mex with my friends (shout-out to queso from Torchy’s Tacos), I’ll be happy. No matter how long you’ve been gone, your alma mater will always feel like home because of the friendships and memories you cherish.