Guest blogger Kevin Kehl: When I was a freshman

Kevin Kehl freshman

Kevin Kehl, freshman year (Petit Jean yearbook)

I don’t know if fall 1979 set any heat records in Searcy, but I do recall that one of the first things I did was purchase a fan to put in the window of my room on the third floor of Armstrong Hall. It was warm to be sure, but the slight breeze created by the fan meant I could concentrate on the intramural softball games being played across the street. I’ll confess that during that first week I probably looked forward to getting out on the intramural field more than attending my classes. When orientation had ended and classes began, I remember teachers holding me to a higher standard than I was used to which was both frightening and refreshing at the same time.

My memory of that first week of school might best be described as snapshots that come into clear focus again and again during this time of the year. Here are a few of those snapshots:

• Guys hanging around the landline phone located in the middle of the hall anticipating a call from home or, better yet, from the girls’ dorm
• A roommate sharing homemade brownies he had received from home
• A letter from dad with a small amount of gas money inside
• Singing at night around the lily pond for hours.
• Daily chapel meeting in the Administration Auditorium.
• A mixed feeling of loneliness, anxiety and excitement as I longed for the familiar, dreaded the unknown and anticipated the possibilities.
• And finally, a keen sense of being in a special place with special people by which God was going to shape me

Kevin Kehl, director of first year experience and academic resources

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