Andrea Arzuaga ’05
My group of friends from Cornell helped make my college experience what it was, and I am still so thankful to have them in my life. I met many of them on my first visit to Cornell in the fall of my senior year in high school. I rode the bus from Chicago with Justin Everage ’05 that night and we met a number of people in the Rorem basement lounge who would become our lifelong friends.
Skip to the fall of 2001, when we all arrived on campus and moved into the fourth floor of Bowman-Carter. I met two students a few doors down from me who were randomly put together but would also become my friends for life: Tia Bougher O’Brien ’05 and Stacy Denham ’05. Meanwhile, Justin was living in Pfeiffer Hall and met another of our band of friends, Megan Pieper Wiltz ’05.
Throughout our four years, we leaned on one another during struggles and reminded each other of the end goal of a great college education. We had a lot of fun, including the creation of “Club Bathroom.” Mount Vernon was a shock for many of us who came from larger, urban cities, and one of the ways we all bonded with one another was through getting ready for an evening out together. Meeting up with Darnell Wiltz ’03, Darryl Allen ’03, Jon Allmond ’02, and Andre Bobb ’05 in the second floor bathroom of Merner, putting on music, dancing around, doing hair and makeup, singing … these made great memories solidifying this group I call my family.
Now we have weddings and babies that bind us; reunion trips that bring back the sense that together we feel like a family; and we’re so thankful that the Hilltop brought us together.
Andrea Arzuaga ’05 is assistant director, Office of Multicultural Student Success, at DePaul University in Chicago.