Kaitlin Fleming, Editor in Chief
I began my first semester at Jacksonville State University in August of 2016. I had just completed my Associate’s degree at Gadsden State Community College and I was ready to move on to a real university.
I love to tell the story of the day I knew Jacksonville State is where I belonged. My mother and I drove down to Jacksonville to tour the campus and meet with my future advisor in April of 2016. As we were driving in on Highway 204, I saw the top of the Houston Cole Library and I was immediately at peace.
Our first stop was at my advisor’s office in Self Hall. I met Mr. Stedham for the first time that morning. I brought a notebook with questions already written down and a list of all the classes I wanted to take in the following semester.
Walking into Self Hall was like walking into my house. I knew that I would spend most of my time there. So far, I have been correct. The first year I was a student here, I spent most of my lunches in the Self Hall student lounge. I survived off Wendy’s Four for Four deals, that were then half priced for JSU students, and vending machine snacks. It should be no surprise that I gained roughly 30 pounds my first year here.
Now that I am finishing my last year and I have been brought in as Editor-in-Chief of the Chanticleer, I might as well bring an air mattress to my office! The good news is, I have lost most of that weight from having no time to eat. In other news, the Pepsi vending machines have been upgraded to Coca Cola machines and now they take debit cards. It’s rather unfortunate for my bank account.
I have made so many memories while here at this university. Some of them are life lessons learned but most of them are pleasant. This campus is filled with so many kind people. There is a reason it is known as the “Friendliest Campus in the South.”
Jacksonville is a beautiful town, even after the destructive tornado in March of 2018. When I am overwhelmed with tests and assignments, I like to sit under the big trees around the campus and look off toward the mountain. If you close your eyes and listen you can hear the sound of a 20J playing in the distance or the sound of the Bibb Grave’s bell chiming at the top of every hour (and five minutes after.) If you listen even harder you can hear the sound of memories being made, happiness being spread and traditions that go back decades.
Welcome home Gamecocks!
P.S. Do us communication students a favor and pick up a newspaper, turn on the news or tune in to a local radio show!