More than 100 students will cross the stage in Sottile Theatre tonight to receive their Master’s degree, and our office is buzzing with excitement. I’ve worked with several of these students since they first came through Porter’s Lodge their first semester, and have enjoyed each and every experience. One of the students that I’ve had the privilege of working with is Kolo Rathburn. He has made such an impact on the college, including his dedication to the Graduate Student Association. Kolo is one of the founding members, and our most recent president. He was also gracious enough to guest blog for us on this very special day.
I’m graduating tonight! Well sort of, you see there is still this monster of a thesis I have to defend, but I have met all other requirements and with a small petition the graduate school has allowed me to participate in tomorrow’s ceremony.
All I can think of is what an honor it has been to be at the Graduate School of College of Charleston. Not only does this institution have great academic support in administration and faculty, but the campus itself is embedded in a great historic city which makes the experience of being a student here truly unique.
During my brief tenure here at the College, about three years now, I have witnessed many changes in the grad school- all of them for the better. With the formation and prosperity of the Graduate Student Association, an organization I am quite fond of, a more tangible graduate student community has formed at the College fostering a true sense of belonging among graduate students. But on a personal level my experience here in Charleston has been absolutely amazing and life-changing. I come from a small town on the North Shore of O`ahu, Hawai`i. Coming to Charleston and the South was a huge change for me. It was through the Graduate School in classes, research, and extracurricular activities that I really made this place my home. The College itself has embraced me each time I’ve reached out regardless of which department it may have been. It has also been my experience that when any graduate student has reached out on campus, they have been welcomed full heartedly.
There is a lot in my heart for the graduate school and this special place in Charleston, but I will refrain from spilling it out in this blog. Suffice it to say that this has been the best decision I have made in my life thus far, coming to the Graduate School at the College of Charleston, and I will always cherish the times I’ve spent here. But for now it’s time to graduate, well sort of.
Until I blog again, as an alumni, Thank you College of Charleston!
And from the bottom of my heart, Aloha.