… to seek greener pastures elsewhere.
During the first two years of my college life, I felt like I was stuck in a rot doing the same routine, performing the same habits and repeating myself over and over. I was happy, but discontented.
I took a chance to seek an adventure of a lifetime as an exchange student in Lille, France. That’s when it all started, really. When I began to realize I was ‘finally living the life’of a college kid unbarred from scolds, a fixed schedule, travels on the weekend and anything that deviated from the norm of my life back home, I decided to take my chance to pursue bigger dreams.
I was given an offer to pursue a bachelor’s degree (an honours programme of one of my dream courses) at one of the top universities in Europe.
As I prepared my honorary dismissal forms when I returned home to Manila, somehow my heart was not silenced nor relieved as I studied the strokes of my signature at the bottom right corner of the green sheet. A signature from the university registrar to complete my request meant a goodbye to my beloved De La Salle, forever. There was no turning back. My mind was fixed.
As much as I thought I was ready for another round of homesickness, separation anxiety from family, friends and loved ones, culture shock and a new university setting (I was accepted as freshman), with a ticket and accommodation already prepared to welcome me to another foreign land, things did not go as planned and I eventually had to kiss the opportunity in Europe farewell. It just wasn’t meant for me at that time.
Pushing away what was right in front of me was a tough pill to swallow. I was more than a year delayed already from school, and by that time it was already too late to enter the academic trimester. I applied for re-admission to the DLSU and I was to return in the following term.
With nothing on my plate for the next few months, I killed boredom and maximized my time with activities that equated to the fun and thrill I felt during Lille life. I met new people and caught up with old friends, scored an internship, competed in figure skating for the last time and travelled to the United States with my parents. I walked in the light of God on the road to self-discovery; what I thought back then was all sorted out when I graduated high school.
As the next two years were filled with academic requirements to accomplish, a GPA to retain, comprehensive exams to pass, readings to highlight, analyze and deconstruct (hello, Literature majors!) and unlimited cups filled with chocolate milk for my all-nighters; those two years were also filled with opportunities I never thought were better than that offer in Europe. Things eventually fell into place, and here I am now typing this and graduating in a couple of hours.
DLSU, a thousand thank you’s are not enough to express how grateful I am to walk your green pastures. I’m happy I made the right choice when you welcomed my elated, froshie Ysabel with four words – “the future begins here”.
To everyone who has witnessed my academic journey in college – may it be in Manila or in Lille, my utmost gratitude goes to infinity and beyond. Off to bigger and better grasslands!
VITANGCOL, Ysabel Viktoria S.
Bachelor of Arts, Major in Literature
Block LR 61 President
DLSU Animo Squad, Batch 2K13
Université Catholique de Lille, Spring Semester 2015
Alyansang Tapat sa Lasallista, GE Candidate 2016
Cultura, AVP Marketing and Publicity 2017
Walang kamatayang pag-ibig sa pamantasan ng De La Salle. Animo La Salle!