Posts Tagged ‘Growing’

Long-Distance Friendships

Tuesday, October 3rd, 2023
Photo by Toni Cuenca on Unsplash

The hardest thing about starting college, I think, is leaving your friends from home and starting from scratch. I love meeting new people, so when I started college, I met a lot of people and made a lot of friends quickly. Even though I loved my new friends, I couldn’t help but grieve my high school friendships. I missed the consistency of seeing them every day in class or at lunch, and I didn’t know how to translate that connection into something that worked long distance. I was afraid of growing apart from them.

It is natural to feel this way. After all, you have relied on this structure for years, so naturally your friendship will have to adjust to this change. Friendships go through changes all of the time. One of my best friends ever is a girl that I met in seventh grade drama class. We were instantly best friends, attached at the hip, matching “best friends forever” Claire’s necklaces and all. It didn’t take long for our friendship to blow up—over what exactly? Who knows—and we became enemies as quickly as we became pals. After taking a few months apart, resilient as ever, we were friends again by eighth grade. It is something we laugh about often, how our friendship has survived so much turbulence, but we are stronger because of it. 

The summer before our senior year of college I went over to her house to go swimming. The weather that summer had been extremely temperamental, either having periods of heavy rain or periods of extreme heat, so any fair weather day like this one was a treat. We sat in tube floaties, face to face, holding our floats together by the handle so we wouldn’t drift apart. We talked about people from high school, roommate drama, hook-ups. Our friendship survives mostly on these silly types of conversations, nothing too serious. Then we started talking about how we had changed so much since middle school, how our friendship has survived so many versions of ourselves, how grateful we were to know each other. We talked about post-grad, how daunting it is to be faced with what’s next, how to find your purpose, your passion. We didn’t often have conversations like that. We learned a lot about each other just floating around together in her backyard that day.

By the end of the conversation we had come to the realization that our years away had actually made our time together more valuable, how we were growing together and our friendship was actually evolving in tandem. Somehow, after ten years of friendship, we were closer than ever, and we parted feeling like we knew each other better. The way we had changed as people actually made us more suited to be better friends to one another, deeping our friendship from middle school best friends to adult best friends. It felt like our friendship had gotten stronger because of the way we had grown as people.

So I guess there are a few things to take away here:

It is totally valid to be sad to leave your friends, but the truth is that distance doesn’t actually kill friendships. The love hasn’t gone anywhere, it is actually just spreading— across cities, state lines, wherever you end up! Call them, go visit, be happy that they’re thriving somewhere new. And honestly, hanging out with your friends’ new friends can be awesome, so don’t be afraid to share the love.

Keep in touch as much as you can, but try to be flexible. Sometimes I like to schedule a call with a friend I haven’t talked to in a while, other times I just try my luck on my walk home from class, or while I’m making dinner. Not everything has to be so formal, even a fifteen minute chat can do wonders. Either way, just pick up the phone and make something happen! 

You don’t have to be afraid of change. Changing is awesome, it just means that you are getting to know yourself better. If you feel you and your old friends are growing apart, that isn’t always a bad thing. The love will always be there, but it is ok to let go of something that is not true to you anymore. Hang onto each other’s floaties, but understand that drifting is natural. It is ok to miss people that you have grown away from, but trust that the current will take you where you need to go. 

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By Erin O’Brien

Erin O’Brien is a student based in Boston, MA studying Communications and Studio Art. She is drawn to telling stories about love and friendship, and is a firm believer that being sappy and loving big is never a waste of time. She loves watching movies and snuggling up with her dog, Jeffrey.

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourages them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing, and services.  

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015.


Valuable Lessons

Wednesday, July 20th, 2022

One of the Disney movies that I remember watching a lot while growing up was Bambi. It was one of my younger sister’s favorites; she loved watching the animals run by on screen. Her favorite character was the rabbit: Thumper. One of his quotes from the movie that was repeated a lot in my house was “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothing at all”. It quickly became an important value for me and my sisters and still is to this day.

Values are incredibly important in life. They can add purpose and guidance where there might not be any. The principles or values someone holds can say a lot about that person оформить займ на карту без отказа срочно. According to Jarrod Davis, they can also help us shape the future into what we want it to be. In a blog written for the Barret Values Center, Davis explains the four areas of values: individual, relationship, organizational, and societal. Each area showcases how a person or an organization uses values to operate and guide their life. Things like loyalty, sustainability, creativity, teamwork, caring, etc. are all examples of values that people can have. 

A lot of values are shaped at a very young age by the people around us and the media that we consume.Media targeted at children include very simple values that the movie or show intends to teach them. Things like “if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all” or “a true hero isn’t measured by the size of his strength, but by the strength of his heart” can teach a child important values that they can carry through the rest of their lives. According to an article by Laura Davis and Janis Keyser, one of the ways children learn about values is “through their exposure to the larger world”. This includes media, their friends and family, books, and anything else they might be exposed to. That is why it’s important to encourage good values at a young age- and why it can be so hard when childhood values clash with adult beliefs (and vice versa). 

I was raised in a very Christian household. Because of this, one of the first things I think of when I’m trying to define my values is a Bible verse: “Love thy neighbor as thyself”. This verse promoted empathy, kindness, generosity, and compassion, which is probably why it was so important for us to know. This idea has always been at the center of a lot of my personal values and probably always will be. However, as I got older, a lot of the Christian values that I was taught started to contradict both what the people in my church and my parents were saying. I started to question where I stood and what I truly valued in life.

This process was very difficult to go through and, for a lot of my teen years, I kind of ignored the conflict that was growing. I figured as long as I was nice to the people around me, as long as I “loved my neighbor as myself,” it didn’t matter what I believed or valued. This ignorance soon started to bother me as I found myself more and more at odds with the ideas around me. I finally got fed up with quietly disagreeing with my parents and started to truly consider what was important to me as a person. As I experienced more and became more educated, I slowly started to reconcile my own personal values with the values that were taught to me as a kid. I was able to see where bias might have come in when teaching me these ideas and started to think for myself about who I wanted to be and what I wanted from life. 

While I still have a lot of growing to do, I am now much more comfortable with who I am and how my values align with that. I have also been able to revisit religion recently and realize that my problem was never with Christianity or even with religion, but with the people that were teaching me one thing and encouraging me to do another. I started to realize the church my family was in was extremely toxic, backwards, and hypocritical. It is a relief to see my parents start to realize this too and break away from that particular congregation. I am no longer as religious as I used to be but I still value what my religious upbringing taught me. Recently they have left that church for another one and I can see them starting to ask themselves the same questions I did. Interestingly enough, these questions have taken them back to the values that were taught to us as kids. It just goes to prove that you’re never too old to go back and rewatch some classic childrens movies. 

Takeaway: Don’t be afraid to move away from what you know to find what’s important.

Questioning your values and place in your community is stressful. Even if you’re comfortable and confident with yourself, we could all use a break once in awhile. Try relaxing with a fresh cup of tea from Moge Tee. Get 15% off with this Campus Clipper coupon and your student ID!

By Callie Hedtke

Callie is going to be a senior at DePaul University in Chicago and is studying Graphic Design. She loves dancing and can usually be found at her school’s gym rehearsing for her next dance show. If she’s not there, she can be found at her computer playing video or out exploring.

For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC,  from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourages them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing, and services.  At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books, we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings and watch our YouTube video showing off some of New York City’s finest students during the Welcome Week of 2015. Open publish panel


Pushing Boundaries: How Traveling and Studying Abroad Have Changed My Life and Shaped My Career Path, and Why You Should Do It Too

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

At only 21 years old, I am no Confucius. I cannot give you sound and scientific advice that, if followed, will give you guaranteed success and happiness and all the things you’ve ever dreamed possible. I do not know everything; I don’t have all the answers. What I DO have is my own experience. One of my favorite lines from a book came from Arthur Japin’s In Lucia’s Eyes that reads, “The world is full of people who spend their entire lives seeking the miracle of love without ever seeing it. It’s actually very simple and self-evident, except to those who seek it. One need only have a different way of seeing things. That is not something you can teach people. All you can do is tell your story.”

Whether or not you’re looking for love, let that last sentence resonate with you. All you can do is tell your story. This is my story.


My mother was born and raised in Brazil and moved to the U.S. when she found her future husband who worked in San Francisco at the time. This man, my father, lived in the U.S. for several years already, but actually grew up in San Jose, Costa Rica.  Call them star-crossed lovers or whatever you wish, these two foreigners set out to make a new future in a new country for their new daughter, me!


Growing up, it was just my parents and me. No siblings, no relatives nearby, no pets other than the occasional goldfish won at a carnival with a lifespan average of two days.  I spent most of my breaks from school traveling, either to Costa Rica or Brazil, to see family and connect with cousins and friends my age, keeping up with both Portuguese and Spanish.

The language was never a barrier to me when I was in another country, but became an issue when I returned to the U.S. and had already started school. I would meet with friends and sometimes be unable to realize that I wasn’t speaking English with them because I was so used to being understood in another language.

In addition to traveling to see relatives, I was fortunate enough to have such hard-working parents who always wanted me to see the world, as was their goal for themselves.  We travelled to many places in Europe before I finished the 8th grade, even at which point it was very clear to me that studying abroad would be in my future, no question.

Before starting high school I KNEW I would be gone for sophomore year – I researched study abroad programs and took advantage of them.  Initially I wanted to go to countries like Italy or Spain, but I wound up finding a full-ride scholarship opportunity (sponsored by U.S. Congress and German Parliament) to study in Germany, so I applied. As I moved further through the selection process, it became surreal how competitive this was: out of 2500 applicants, only 50 would receive scholarships.

In April 2006, I learned I had received the scholarship. I turned 15 the next month and three months later was off to live in Germany for a year: no family, no friends, and didn’t  know a word of German. I was the youngest of all the recipients, and after 11 months I was fluent in German.

Before beginning my time at a University, it was clear to me I would study abroad again. I would have applied for the program right away if it weren’t for the window allowed for it by the study abroad office. I was the first to submit an application for that as well, and in the fall of 2010, I had one of the BEST semesters of my life in Bern, Switzerland. If I hadn’t graduated early, I would have studied abroad again.

I’ve now relocated from Arizona to New York and am pursuing a career here while considering my options for a Master’s abroad – perhaps Switzerland again.  I’ve even recently been asked to work with a European magazine for some press releases. My passion is traveling and connecting with people who have experienced this and exchanging cultures.  All the traveling and studying abroad I’ve done have brought me here and told me where I’m going.  You CAN and SHOULD do it too, and even if traveling isn’t something you want for your career, experiencing it now while you’re young is priceless and will teach you so much about yourself and the world.


Where to look for study abroad programs:

  1. Consult with your school’s study abroad offices: I realize these offices are becoming smaller and smaller in the U.S., but these guys know what they’re talking about. Ask which kinds of programs are available to you – some may have year standing or GPA requirements. Maybe there’s a specific kind of program you’re searching for – my school offered programs in which you travel with a group of students from the University while learning abroad. My school also offered a program where you didn’t pay a study abroad fee, just the same tuition you were paying while attending the school, which is how I was able to study abroad. Many study abroad offices even have information on scholarships. There are plenty of options; inform yourself!
  2. Check other programs: This gets tricky and is where fees come into play, sky-rocketing the price of your study abroad experience. My scholarship study abroad program was limited to high school students, but there are other groups out there! Check out: or
  3. Maybe you’re interested in the experience of it but don’t want to be studying: Check out things like where you can be a live-in nanny, earn some money, have a host family that could help teach you more about the culture, and be immersed in your new surroundings. You could take a semester off to do it, do it in the summer, or make time for it after you graduate. Another post-graduate option could be The Peace Corps.
  4. Degrees and Internships Abroad: These are other ways you can be productive in a new place. You can research schools in the areas you’re most interested in and see their guidelines for international students. My advice for those looking to study in Europe would be to check out OR where you can define your search based on degree subject, country, or tuition and GET THIS: tuition prices elsewhere could be as little as 4% what you’re paying now. What about textbook fees? That’s all an American scam so you can say “bye-bye” to that! As for internships, try or ask at your school’s study abroad office.  HEADS UP: this internship opportunity in China was just tweeted via @InternQueen that may be worthwhile:

5. If all else fails and you just want to travel abroad but want to do it sooner rather than later (excellent choice), check out for good deals on flights and hotel information – those prices keep going up these days so it’s good to know of a place that’s dedicated to finding competitive rates. I’d also recommend, which is where I found an affordable flight to NYC.


Even if traveling doesn’t give you insatiable wanderlust as it has to me, at the very least you’ll         broaden your horizons, learn something new and take these experiences with you in your next job interview, which could make all the difference. I encourage you to try something new, to not be afraid, and to learn a new language – there’s no better way than immersion! At the risk of sounding cliché, the world is truly your oyster so go out and open it!






Posted by Lauren A Ramires. Follow her blog, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram (username: laurenaramires) for more lifestyle and inspiration posts.

If you’re interested in learning more of the experiences of a Peace Corps Volunteer, check out this blog for stories on the daily happenings of a PCV and things you could expect.