Icy cold winds and snow piles over five feet high was my first encounter at SUNY Oswego. Most would agree those are not appealing features to attract someone to a college, but it grabbed me and pulled me in tight. As I toured Oswego for the first time in brisk conditions just three years ago, I fell in love with how beautiful campus looked, even covered in snow. Over-looking the vast Lake Ontario hugging the shores of campus, the sunsets leave picture perfect moments. And when the long winter season comes to a close and the temperatures start to rise, the Flat Rocks, Bev’s Ice Cream, and Rudy’s Fish Fry becomes the popular hangout stops on campus.
[Picture of the Lake Ontario Sunset]
As an aspiring student-athlete, Oswego was a dream come true. With a wide variety of academic and athletic opportunities, it wasn’t hard to find my place on campus. Being a hockey player, the newly renovated Marano Campus Center was a huge selling feature for me as an athlete. Oswego gave me the chance to play at a top-notch facility, at my highest potential. As for any other student on campus, it provides an entertaining and intense atmosphere where they can cheer on their favorite Laker Hockey Teams. Next to hockey, other sports have received new facilities such as the Turf Field which is home to soccer, lacrosse, and field hockey games. With a lot of opportunities for athletes and students, these facilities help bring Oswego students closer together.
Leaving for your freshman year of college is an exciting and terrifying time. Saying goodbyes to your family and friends, is always tough. But, if you go to SUNY Oswego, you most likely reside somewhere in the state of New York like Buffalo or “on” Long Island (as I’ve learned); therefore, the ease of traveling home for a quick weekend is in the cards. As for me, I leave my family, friends, and boyfriend 700 miles away in a small southwest suburb of Chicago, Illinois. Most people here have asked me why I chose to go to school so far away. The answer is simple: SUNY Oswego gave me the opportunity and the privilege to receive a fulfilling education alongside the honor of wearing a Laker hockey jersey every weekend to represent, not only my team, but the Oswego State Lakers with pride. Yes, at times it can be tough being so far from home; I only get to travel home for Christmas and Spring break; phone calls, text messaging, and Facetime have become a familiar use of communication. Although, having my Laker Hockey family here is a close second. The friendships and relationships I have made over the years, has left me with lifelong connections that I will cherish. Looking back at it all, I wouldn’t want to spend my last 3 years anywhere else. Oswego has become my second home, and it will always share a special place in my heart.
My name is Erika Truschke, and this is why I am 700 miles away from home.