Dear Student Leadership
Trill or Not Trill?

Skye recently graduated from Radford University. As her collegiate career comes to an end, so does her time as active undergraduate student leader. She plans to start graduate school in Fall of 2016 to work on my master’s in higher education/student affairs once she decides which program is her best fit! This is her letter.

Dear Student Leadership,

From the moment I stepped on campus
Already homesick, yet excited as just a freshman
Attending club fairs, interest meetings and extracurricular campus events,
A sudden yearning for doing more than just attending classes arose.
Wanting to make a difference –
Needing to make a difference.
Envisioning myself doing this
Not only on campus, but in the community, and more
I knew one thing was real:

I fell in love with you.

A love so deep I gave you my all –
From my nights and weekends
To my free time and not-so-free time.
Me time became a thing of the past
My friend group became other student leaders
And I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

I was just a first-generation college student
No idea with what I wanted to do with my life
A degree and career seemed so far away
I only knew I wanted to help people and give back
But then I found YOU
And you helped ME find ME.

I not only joined clubs and organizations
I took leadership roles
Even the ones no one wanted at times.
Which eventually turned into vice president,
And even president positions on some of the most esteemed executive boards.
You ended up being the best part of my collegiate experience.

Somewhere in the midst of sending and receiving emails night and day
Attending back-to-back meetings,
Along with back-to-back events
Conduct hearings,
Teaching leadership courses
Sleepless nights planning concerts
Meeting with the President, Vice Presidents and Dean regularly
Attending conferences
All while still remaining focused on academics
Somehow maintaining a 4.0 GPA
You helped me find my passion in life.
Although my time with you has expired
I will always be thankful –
For the memories, experiences, and friendships.
But also because without you
I would’ve never gained the mentors I have
Or been pushed to explore a career in student affairs.
Meaning although my journey with you is over,
It’s time for the tables to turn.

Time for me to facilitate growth in new student leaders
And help them find their place, their belonging, and their passions.
Stick with them through the good and the bad, and everything in between.
Teach them the things you’ve taught me.
Because that’s what you do
When someone makes you feel as
Alive as you’ve made me feel.

And we all know
No matter where I go, or what I do in life
I’ll always take with me the things you have taught me
Building on strengths, transforming weaknesses.
Invaluable, transferable lessons, skills, and relationships
Which can only be obtained through embracing you.

So yes, I’m leaving.
But I’ll always be around to check on you.

Love you always,

Skye Heasley