Hi all, I am so excited to be a guest blogger this week! I am extremely fortunate to be back on campus working in the alumnae relations and development office. If you had told me in 2012 at graduation that I would be back working at the College six years later, I might have thought you were crazy. But it’s funny how the world works sometimes and Sweet Briar has this way of calling you home.
Welcome banners come and go, but the drive in feels the same.
Ten years ago, I arrived on campus as a first-year. It is honestly crazy to think it has already been 10 years. Move-in day feels both just like yesterday as well as sooo long ago. I distinctly remember arriving on campus in the car with my parents. I was feeling both extremely excited and anxious all at the same time — I am originally from Maine and an only child, so the idea of being 13 hours away from home was a lot to process.
Everyone talks about the drive up to “Checkpoint Charlie.” It’s essentially the most iconic part of Sweet Briar, and there is definitely a reason for that. In some ways, that drive takes you out of reality and everyday life and brings you into the Sweet Briar community. The ease with which you maneuver from Route 29 to bucolic trees and landscaping is incredible. I had just been to campus a few months earlier for Accepted Applicants Weekend, so you would think the entrance onto campus would not be as grand, but nope: It still was.
A 2008 selfie of Alex Grobman in her new home. Nervcited?
Any nervousness (I saw somewhere recently that the youth of the world have started to use the word “nervcited” to combine nervous and excited and I think it’s an appropriate description of move-in day!) I might have been feeling went away immediately with the warm welcome the admissions officers gave me as I entered the Conference Center. This is one of their favorite days of the year. They have worked closely with all of the students for the past year, if not longer, and finally they are here. You really form a special bond with your admissions counselor throughout the recruiting and application process, and it’s equally exciting for the students to finally be on campus. There is a saying in admissions that once you get your campus I.D., you are considered “official.” Along with arriving on campus, becoming “official” is my next most vivid memory.
Here’s what Alex’s room looked like in 2008. Sweet!
I have to be honest: I thought I would remember more than I actually do. Maybe 10 years is longer ago than it seems. Some of my other memories that are floating back are about moving into Meta Glass and realizing that I might have packed too much (a lesson I seem to have yet to learn), saying goodbye to my parents and feeling ready for this next adventure. I think I was prepared, and I had a feeling that I was finally part of this community I had fallen in love with just months before — because that’s exactly what Sweet Briar is: a community, whether you’re a first-year, an alumna, a staff member or faculty. Everyone watches out for each other and everyone cares about how you are doing and really takes a genuine interest in your life.
One more thing: 10 years later, I am still incredibly thankful that I made the decision to attend Sweet Briar, and I’m so excited to help welcome the Class of 2022! You are official and have just entered a community that will be with you for the rest of your life.
With a background in fundraising for nonprofit theaters in New York City, Alexandra Grobman ’12 supports engagement and fundraising among alumnae classes at Sweet Briar. She also manages student giving campaigns and Phonathon and has a great interest in educating all constituencies about the importance of engagement and fundraising. Outside of Sweet Briar, Alex is a dog lover and thinks everyone should follow her Yellow Lab on Instagram @glothelab.