Author’s note: This is a bonus story that I am releasing as my farewell address to the club as I am transferring from Norco College to Cal State University San Bernardino. I hope you enjoy it.
I find myself standing before one of the few buildings of Norco College— specifically, it is the building for Industrial Technology.
There is a panel before me that’s shielded by glass and displays several posters and advertisements. Among those papers is the Dean’s list that listed the name of the most successful this year. My name was among them.
I couldn’t help but smile for my achievement while feeling a sense of bittersweetness.
I’ve achieved in getting myself transferred from Norco College to a Cal-State University. This is thanks to all the effort I can deliver. Yet, at the same time, it came at the cost of so much — and I don’t mean money. My mind and self-esteem are still in an uncertain place.
I exited the building and walked under the warm sunlight; a gentle breeze flowed through and left a cool touch.
Palm trees decorated the side of the concrete road. An amphitheatre, a store, a library, and other buildings can be seen in my surroundings as I enter the center of the campus. Bushes, grasses, tables, and ordinary trees that are also present reminded me of the campus grounds back in middle school and high school.
I stopped and reflected. My eyes are completely focused on the blue sky; a few clouds pass by while the wind and sun gently touch my skin.
Regarding my mind, it has been through a rollercoaster that’s filled with drama, pressure, and stress. My family, my part-time job, and my personal life have both been things I enjoyed in life, but they also ended up being obstacles that brought about this roller coaster. Even the unpleasant moments during my time here in Norco College were part of this. I was only able to find some peace through therapy and my own meditation. Yet, I continue to live with this mental struggle.
My self-esteem has also been on this rollercoaster, but it has never broken. Whenever I felt held back or brought down, I continued to get back up and move on. This endurance is what kept me from continuing my study here in Norco College, and I hope it continues in my Cal-State.
I will be leaving Norco College for Cal-State San Bernardino.
Deep in my heart, the career path I chose wasn’t the one I wanted and was chosen out of the pressure from family; “it was for your own good” one family member said. Yet, I vow to follow my dreams and seek the career that I want.
I continued walking down the pathway, passing by the palm trees and the few buildings of the college. In front of me is the parking lot; the garden and bookstore are on my left and the administration building is on my right.
Looking down, there are the stairs. As I descended and took a few steps forward, I stopped to turn and see something painted on the steps.
The special message that the painting left makes my exit feel more meaningful: the 30th anniversary of Norco College. It reminded me to treasure the clubs that I attended and the teachers I enjoyed learning with. Thanks to the club, I was able to enjoy my hobbies and improve myself a bit; thanks to the teachers I enjoyed, I was able to learn something and find some fun in my courses.
I smile and turn to face the parking lot again. I walked a bit further until I approached my car. I took a look back at the red-roofed buildings of Norco College and gave the place a wave.
In my mind I had this to say:
Norco College, after almost two and a half years of learning here, I am finally saying farewell.
My spirit is unbroken, and I still have some meaning to live.
Though I love this College, I cannot embrace it all.
With a wave, a smile, and a teardrop, I hope I am remembered.
Farewell, Norco College
Farewell, My Teachers
And Farewell, My Friends