A Fond Farewell to the University of Michigan

A senior’s perspective on feeling thankful.

By Katie FitzGibbons November 16, 2022
A Fond Farewell to the University of Michigan

This is my last semester at the University of Michigan, which means I’m about five weeks or so from graduating. Absolutely mindblowing! I know this will sound cliché, but it feels like I just entered this university as a first-year, so new and inexperienced. While it feels as though no time has passed at all, I’ve grown so much in these past three and a half years.

Michigan Stadium
View from inside Michigan Stadium.

Living and studying at this university has helped me grow into the person I am today, and I’m incredibly grateful for it. I’ve become much more confident in myself and I have developed so many more skills and hobbies. I also am thankful for the people I met along the way here, each impacting my life in many different ways. I wouldn’t be the same without them. I’m practically bursting with thankfulness, and, in honor of the holiday coming up, I would like to talk a bit about what I’m thankful for at the University of Michigan.

Firstly and most importantly, I am thankful for the people I met along the way. I have gained such strong friendships that I hope last a lifetime. They have been there for me through thick and thin, making my life infinitely better in the process. I also am thankful for the staff at Michigan who have gone above and beyond to help me in any way they can. My professors have always put so much effort and passion into their classes, transferring that passion onto me. Everyone I’ve met within the Ann Arbor community is doing such incredible things with their lives, inspiring me to live a life that I’m proud of.

Hatcher Graduate Library South Stacks
Exterior view of Hatcher Graduate Library.

Next, I am thankful for the study spaces that the University of Michigan has offered me. I can confidently say that I used those spaces to their full potential, especially the Stacks in the Hatcher Graduate Library. Whether cozy or bustling, brightly lit or illuminated by dim yellow light, inside or outside, each space has its own atmosphere and purpose, giving you a space to study no matter what mindset you’re in. I’ve got to say I spent most of my studying time in Hatcher, so I would like to thank the third floor of the South Stacks for being my personal studying haven.

Backpacking Club backpacking trip
Traveling on a Backpacking Club backpacking trip.

I would like to thank the university for all of the resources and opportunities it has offered me. In my time here, I was able to volunteer on the Campus Farm, use the Department of Film, Television, and Media (FTVM)’s film studios, listen to incredible lecturers and speakers, live abroad, backpack with Backpacking Club, and participate in so many amazing school-organized events. They have always provided me with an incredible amount of help and will still aid me as I move from a student to an alum.

Me Using my Film Skills
Me using my film skills.

Finally, I’d like to thank the FTVM program and the Michigan Theater. I’m thankful for them for constantly resparking my love of the movies and reminding me exactly why I decided to be a film major.

I’m on to my next steps, but I’ll forever be grateful for the time I spent on this campus and I’ll always think back on Michigan with fondness. And to all the first-years at Michigan, I encourage you to keep your eyes open and remain curious. The University of Michigan has the potential to impact you just as much as it has impacted me.

Katie FitzGibbons

Katie FitzGibbons is a junior in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts double majoring in Anthropology and Film, Television, and Media. Katie is the Social Chair for Friends of the Campus Farm and spends a lot of her free time volunteering at local farms. She loves doing any activities outdoors, including hiking, camping, or just simply walking around campus. When not outside, you can usually find her crocheting or reading a good book.