the syllabus

“The real test?..It’s life.” ― Dr. Donita Whitney Bammerlin

When we think about the beginning of school, more specifically college, the term “syllabus” comes to mind. A sheet of paper (most often 4-5 sheets of paper…10 if you wind up with a nutcase professor) with an outline of your semester. The do’s, the don’ts, the non-negotiable terms and the “I was here EVERY class” loopholes. Strict deadlines, collaborative opportunities (aka group nightmares), term papers and the date of each time you’ll be tested.

But when we think about the beginning of no more school, otherwise known as the real world, no one is waiting to hand us a syllabus and tell us what the next semester will look like. Now we get to jump month by month paying the bills, week by week hard at work, day by day doing “life.” Life without a syllabus.

But what if a life syllabus existed? I like to think it’d go a bit like this…

Life 101
Now until Forever

Instructor: You
Office: Earth
Phone: 1-800-WHATNOW

Course Objectives
1. Figure out life calling
2. Positively contribute to society via objective #1
3. Form incredible relationships
4. Learn something new each and every day
5. Be happy

Course Materials
– Strong support system
– Faith in something
– Strong work ethic
– Determination
– Positive attitude

Weighted Grading
0% – Your Belongings
5% – Job, Profession, Salary, ect.
10% – Company you keep
15% – Contributing to society
30% – Being kind to others
40% – Having a good attitude

Disclaimer: Who you are today does not define who you must be tomorrow. You are in control.

Consult family, partner, friends, boss, ect. for more information. Will be assigned along the way…work hard to complete them well.

Will often occur without warning. Do your best…most importantly, learn from them.

Have a wonderful life!

*end syllabus*

If only finding our life calling and changing the world for the better were as easily completed as an all-nighter in the library to finish a 20-page research paper. But, in all honesty, I think that may be the beauty of it. We get to work hard and follow our curiosity (passion is overrated) and impact those around us and learn and grow and do awesome things for the rest of forever. Cool.

As you probably know, I’m graduating in 3 days. I truly have no words for how excited I am to throw away those few packets of strategically highlighted paper…no longer acting within the confines of a course outline so someone can put a grade on my efforts and ask me to cram information into my brain to spit it up on paper and then let it go forever. Now there’s only life-long learning, doing what I love, and helping those around me on the “group projects” that really matter. And the tests? We get to study for those every second of every day so that when they decide to reveal themselves, we can show the world what we’ve really learned.

But I suppose I’ll walk to one of the last finals of my collegiate career and finish up the requirements listed on that syllabus…the real test is only beginning.

just living, lizzi


investments and insurance

“in·sur·ance: a thing providing protection against a possible eventuality. a means of guaranteeing protection or safety.” ― whoever writes definitions for Google

Four (or five) years ago we stepped onto campus for our first few days of class: there was an excessive amount of purple (seriously, even the trees were purple) and enough smiles to run a Crest campaign. We happily walked to class but honestly, we just didn’t get it yet. A few months later, we walked to class with some friends, sat with some familiar faces and blissfully enjoyed all of the freedom we had been promised. That summer, we all went home excited to see high school friends but after about a week, MHK was calling our names. Because sometime during that first year, we met people and made memories more incredible than we thought existed.

The next few years were a blast. We bought way too many t-shirts, stayed up way too late, studied way too little, turned 21 way too quick (and consequently, drank way too often) and then all of a sudden senior year was here…way too fast. (In case you hadn’t quite caught on yet, this is another post by a completely and totally emotionally unstable K-State senior…so yeah.)

And during all that time of “way too,” we were investing. Investing in our education, in people, in the color purple…investing in K-State. No matter the kind, or size, we all made an investment. And now I sit here, only 11 (ELEVEN!) days away from graduation, and I’m certain that because of my investment, this beautiful place has given me insurance. It has protected me from this thing everyone likes to call the “real world.” It has guaranteed my happiness and it’s kept me safe.

But at some point our insurance providers can no longer insure us. Thankfully, K-State isn’t dropping us for our lack of responsibility or overt recklessness…they’re watching us move on with complete and total confidence as we conquer, change, impact and invest in the rest of the world. And they’re telling us that we can always come home to our little apple.

Good luck, Wildcats! May you find your next insurance provider soon and they keep you as protected, happy and safe as our college years at K-State did.

just living, lizzi