Photo courtesy of Kristina Atienza Kristina Atienza is now the Station Manager at WRKC.
Photo courtesy of Kristina Atienza
Kristina Atienza is now the Station Manager at WRKC.

College makes students grow in ways that they may have never expected before. Sometimes before they can even wrap their head around whether their declared major classes make sense, senior year knocks at the door. All the routines and habits of the past few years can change over one summer, and a student can transform from being just another face in the crowd to becoming a leader.

Homecoming is one opportunity for those in their senior year to take a break from the chaos and stress of the pinnacle of their academic career to enjoy a time to appreciate how far they’ve come and see just what might lie ahead after they cross the stage with a degree in hand.

This year’s homecoming events were full of incredible moments that I’ll never forget, but more than anything it gave me the best chance to be thankful for choosing King’s.

Starting off the weekend, I got to take the shuttle to the Woodlands to enjoy my first and only Homecoming Dance. The music was good and the atmosphere was great, but the best sight was seeing many of my friends standing proudly in the Homecoming Court. It was the moment that made me realize that the Class of 2016 is now at the top of the metaphorical totem pole. Titles aside, many of us now are in positions that others look up to, expecting us to lead by example.

Any worries or concerns about rising up to meet the challenges that I may have had immediately disappeared once I got to the Robert L. Betzler Athletic Complex. How can anyone be concerned or scared when they’re surrounded by Monarch Nation? It seemed impossible to feel anything but optimistic for the road ahead when alumni from all over returned to Wilkes-Barre. The seamless combination of students and alumni filling the stands to show their pride was only enhanced with the overtime victory accomplished by the football team.

There aren’t enough words to describe the comfort Homecoming weekend provided. It’s the beginning of the final chapter for the class of 2016. I can’t be scared of what lies ahead with the amount of comfort those I saw this weekend gave me. I was so stressed about this year, but now I’m just excited for everything that has yet to come.

Hopefully when I attend this grand tradition in the future, I will always be able to remember the love and happiness my second home has given me. Homecoming weekend has made me proud that I am and always will be a part of Monarch Nation.