Growing in your first year at SDSU

Luke Eide


 Of all of the realizations that I can depict of myself, one stands out compared to all of the others: I am a freshman. I graduated from Deuel High School last May and I’m on track to complete my second semester at this university.

I have grown in many different ways throughout this past year and I have made new friends, officially declared my major, cheered the Jacks on from the Pride bleachers and experienced other opportunities that this campus had to offer.

I cannot express how humbling it has been to know that by coming to SDSU, I made the right choice. But with every new beginning comes an end, and because I’m a freshman, I don’t have the experience, the years, or the wisdom really to give the graduating class of 2014 any advice.

Instead, I’m going to mention some of the experiences I’ve had here at South Dakota State:

Besides moving in, the very first thing I did was go to Pride practice. It was nerve-racking, it was hot, but it was fun. 

Throughout the whole semester, I developed friendships and memories that will never be forgotten. The amount of time and effort put into practicing stretched the band to the end of the field, literally, and gave off powerful performances that wowed the crowd. 

I’m glad to have been part of the band and I’m excited to be a member of it next year once more.

Then the classes came. Let’s just say my brain hurt by the end of the first semester. But nevertheless, I took those finals and surprised myself and proved that hard work and determination can make all the difference into getting good grades once the time runs out and the pencils go down.

Film class was entertaining. Physics was challenging. Symphonic band was rewarding. Biology was time consuming, and speech was interesting. 

I had quite the variety of classes this semester and although I may not be finished with my generals, I’m looking forward to starting my next semester despite the difficulties that may lie ahead.

This last weekend I was involved with the band concerts. Ending the year on a “high note” was a great way to wrap the semester up. 

Another thing I learned is that the groups I was involved with gave me more opportunity, more insight and more enjoyable moments than I ever thought I would get being just a freshman at the largest university in the state.

And that’s the gist of the year.

Four years ago, Cal Thomas wrote an opinion article that was put into the Watertown Public Opinion and has been hanging on our fridge since. 

In his article, to the graduates he made many meaningful remarks about graduation and life. He gave all sorts of advice such as, “Your value does not lie in how much money you make, who you know, or what office you hold,” “Live within your means,” and (my personal favorite) “Make your goal more than accumulating money and buying stuff that eventually winds up in an estate sale.”

Mr. Thomas’s article gave me an inspiration to take college in and to come up with new advice that I can retell myself once I graduate from this place. 

Again, I’m just a freshman and I don’t have everything figured out by any means, but I become more and more confident each day in what I’ve learned here and why I’m here.

Life can be interesting, challenging, time-consuming, entertaining, yet nerve-racking. Opportunity awaits us not only at the beginning, but in the future. 

Practice, effort, hard work, and determination are key to wowing the crowd and giving powerful performances. Through involvement new friendships, memories, and enjoyable moments will prosper and never be forgotten.

Luke Eide is majoring in ag education. He can be reached at [email protected]