Goodbye 2013: A Year in Happy Valley

Zucker_goodbyehappyvalleyThis article was supposed to be a list. I wanted to acknowledge every special moment that brought Penn State together in 2013. But as I sat down to write, I stared at a blank page.

I tried to reflect, tried to wrack my brain for the most defining moments of the past year. A few things came to mind: raising a record-breaking 12 million for the Four Diamonds Fund, the opening of the Pegula Ice Arena, the football team’s incredible homecoming victory over Michigan.

But as I thought of those incredible times, the memories that made me smile were not those exact moments, but the ones associated with them: holding the hands of my sorority sisters during the final four hours of Thon (S/O to Moxie), or screaming so hard that we cried during the Michigan game.

I realize that these memories don’t apply to all Penn Staters. But in a certain way, we all have our own. These awesome, university-wide moments that we experience as students here bring us closer to the people surrounding us. We create our own memories to supplement those defining moments.

While we are all Penn State, we are also individuals influenced by those who help us to grow.  Our friends who we’ve made at this beloved university are what make each moment special, and they influence our path as the year presses on.

The moments that define a year in Happy Valley are the afternoons spent laughing with friends, traditions we develop, relationships we form, or nights that, for no particular reason, turn out to be really special. They are the moments that make us laugh so hard we cry, or cry so hard that the only thing left to do is laugh.

We all have our own favorite memories from the past year. We have all grown in some particular way, specific to our lives here.  Be thankful for the friends whom you shared this year with. And more importantly, for Penn State for bringing us all together.

Photo by Ashley Zucker


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