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Outgoing seniors offer advice to incoming first-years

<p>Seniors pay it forward and encourage first-years to learn from their mistakes.</p>

Seniors pay it forward and encourage first-years to learn from their mistakes.

As the spring semester comes to an end, many seniors take this time to feel nostalgic and think about their time spent at Miami University.

Brianna Dunavent and her former roommates are among the many graduating students reminiscing about their college experience. 


"It started out as a super sappy conversation,” Dunavent said. “And then we started thinking about all the things we wish we’d done differently.” 

The friend group started to list their advice, wanting to share it with their friends. 


Dunavent decided to reach out to the Class of 2020 Facebook group, initially for one of her capstone assignments and then thought about asking everyone to contribute to an advice book for underclassmen. 


Ben Klein commented on the post, feeling compelled to share that incoming freshmen don’t have to fit into the ’Miami mold’ but should instead choose their own path.  


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“I felt like I had to be outgoing and social,” Klein said. “I had to go to the bars and do all of that stuff to fit that scheme that everyone seems to fit into when you go to Miami, but I realized soon that a lot of that could be fake and superficial.”


He hopes first-years find that out sooner rather than later and don’t have to experience his mistakes. 

Lindsay Douglass is about to reach the end of her freshman year. She, too, felt like other students had influence on her decisions. 

“I wish I would’ve known how important it is to really take classes and declare majors you are passionate about without letting other people’s opinions sway you,” Douglass said. 


Dunavent hopes the list of advice reaches incoming first-years. She started putting together a list with all different kinds of advice. Among her favorites are quotes from Morgan Tillery and Paige Pennington. 


“Live every moment to the fullest and take advantage of every opportunity to spend time with your friends because before you know it, the four years will fly by and/or could come to an early end.” – Morgan Tillery, Class of 2020



“You can go out all you want, but being hungover is a lame excuse to miss class #WorkHardPlayHard” – Paige Pennington, Class of 2020


In this bittersweet time, Dunavent tries to make the best out of it. 

Dunavent does not have a concrete plan on how to publish her advice book yet, but her ideas include reaching out to a student publication on campus as well as the university in the hope of receiving their support. 

“This [advice book] would be really awesome to have to look back on,” she said. When facing new challenges, learning from the past could help with making tough decisions.