Voices of Trips: Lara Balick ’19

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What is your role for Trips 2016?

Hiking 1 Trip Leader

What do you like to study?

Biology and Ethics

If you went on a DOC Trip, which trip did you go on?

Hiking 2

What are 3 words that describe your first year at Dartmouth?

Welcoming, exciting, growth

What are you looking forward to for Trips 2016?

I had such a great time on my trip last year. I am looking forward to bonding with my trippees, getting them excited about Dartmouth, and sharing a few of my favorite Dartmouth traditions.

Tell us about a highlight of your time at Dartmouth so far.

I love the simple pleasures of my everyday life at Dartmouth – walking across campus and saying hello to so many people, a Capella shows on weekday nights, lunch with friends at Foco, running in Pine Park, and the beauty of being in New Hampshire.

What’s the most important item you forgot to pack when you came to move in?

I didn’t bring a hat, coat and gloves! I thought I would be warm enough with a light jacket until I went home for Thanksgiving. I was wrong. Definitely bring warm clothes when you move in in September.

If you could go back to the beginning of your first year here and tell yourself one thing, what would it be?

As I prepared to leave for college last summer, friends and family repeatedly told me that my next four years at Dartmouth would be the best years of my life. And they were right- it is fantastic. This year I learned so much about myself and the world. I made friends I can’t imagine my life without.

But as much as we idealize college as fun and amazing, it’s not always easy to be here without your support system from home. With rapid personal and academic growth sometimes come growing pains that catch people by surprise because they’re not expecting them. Freshman year is a lot of adjustments all at once- making all new friends, finding yourself in the middle of the pack academically when you’re used to being the highest achiever, and living in a new place without your family.

I would tell myself this one thing if I could do a rewind of freshman year – it’s totally okay to sometimes not be okay. Do your best, don’t be too hard on yourself, and try to remember that you’re not the only one feeling the way you’re feeling.

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