Arts & Culture / Mosaic / October 10, 2012

Knox comes together for Family and Friends Weekend

(Andrei Papancea/TKS)

With Family and Friends Weekend around the corner, families and homes are at the forefront of students’ minds. Knox students have their individual feelings about being away from home.

Being away from home for most of the year, students have had different reactions to being on their own. Junior Alexia Watkins enjoys being at Knox but admits that it is a bit difficult when a family experiences a loss.

“Being away from home during a time like that can be rough,” she said. “But I do like being away from my family, just to be able to test out my independence.”

Independence is almost a cliché when it comes to going to college, but it is still a strong trend amongst students.

“There [were] a lot more freedoms, and the ability to just run your own life, do whatever you want,” freshman Brian Cole said in regards to coming to Knox. “I think school here is more interesting than living at home and doing the same thing every day.”

“To put it bluntly, I can feel myself becoming more responsible,” freshman Logan Hartmann said. “I’ve always had a fair amount of independence at home but this … feels real.”

The disconnection from family is mostly a new and sometimes enjoyable experience for freshmen, but upperclassmen also tend to enjoy a vacation from home.

“It’s nice to get away,” senior Cale Dahm said.

Many returning students at Knox have been through the routine before and have become comfortable with being on their own. Despite this students still have a fair amount of care for their families back home.

“It’s hard, I miss them a lot,” junior Carina Arroyo said. “But eventually I don’t want to go home.”

Homesickness is another common emotion shared by Knox students, though more for some than others.

“I wasn’t homesick at all … I’m okay with it,” sophomore Louisa Parzyk said. “I don’t know why, I thought I’d miss them.”

Many students find Knox to be a fairly comforting place due to the community and bonds they have formed while being here.

“I was really homesick for the first week,” sophomore Kristine Ilagan said. “I was really miserable, but then I realized after meeting new people at Knox that I’m really liking this place.”

Many students call home on a regular basis or catch up with the family through other means such as texting, Skype and social media sites like Twitter and Facebook.

“I call them almost daily,” Arroyo said

Students also combat feelings of homesickness by making friends at school and participating in group-oriented activities like clubs or sports.

“With cross-country … there’s a family there,” Cole said. “It’s pretty close, tight-knit, like a family.”

Support systems are sought out by many students to promote that sense of family and help students feel more comfortable at Knox.

“If anybody’s having a rough day, it’s good to know that somebody can help you out,” Dahm said. “The more people you know, the more comfortable it is.”

To build this feeling of “family” at Knox, many students claim that school traditions like Pumphandle and Midnight Breakfast encourage a feeling of friendliness and a sense of community. These Knox traditions offer ways for students to support each other.

“Everybody’s in the same boat … you understand the stress that someone is going through,” Arroyo said. “We lean on each other.”

Connor Schmidt

Tags:  family family and friends weekend friends midnight breakfast pumphandle tradition

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