… Honestly, it’s all about the Bobcats.
Homecoming. That hallowed, welcoming weekend when Bobcat alumni flock to the bricks (and bars) of Athens. As a recent graduate of Ohio University, I wasn’t sure what to expect for my first trip to OU after graduating in 2015. I moved to Chicago a week after graduation to begin my first big-girl job, and although I missed 60 Mill Street, weekly PRSSA meetings at 6 o’clock, and my very best friends, there’s something to be said for post-grad life.
Secret: it doesn’t suck.
I arrived in Athens on Friday morning, and immediately headed to Donkey Coffee to WFH – in PR talk, that’s “work from home” – for the day. I set up shop in a sunny corner overlooking West Washington Street, and began the daily duties that had become second nature during my first 6 months in the Windy City. Sitting among college kids cramming for exams on a Friday afternoon felt a bit off; I was busy answering emails and discussing media monitoring with my co-workers. Looking around, I wondered if anybody could tell that I no longer “belonged” in Athens. However, when PRSSA past-president Cidnye Weimer arrived to surprise me, the vibe instantly shifted. Here was a friend, sitting with me in Donkey Coffee, chatting about life post-grad. In that moment, the months since graduation faded away, my heart felt happy and I was instantly at hOUme.
Sitting there with Cidnye, I realized that without the people, Ohio University is just an educational institution; Court Street a jaunty compilation of red brick. Of course, Athens is a beautiful town, hidden in the rolling hills of Southeast Ohio. However – aren’t beautiful things best shared? What’s a memory without the people you created it with? The most important lesson I learned during that first Homecoming Weekend three years ago (besides the fact that I still love Hot Nuts), is that wherever Bobcats go, OU will follow.
The people of Ohio University – both current students and alumni alike – are the real magic that makes our school such a special place, and that’s why Homecoming is like Christmas morning to so many. That being said, it’s important to remember – in the years and months and even days preceding graduation – that no matter where you are in the world, if you are with a Bobcat, you will always be hOUme.
Briagenn Adams is an Ohio University graduate living her best post-grad life in the Windy City. When she’s not working at Green Building & Design Magazine, Briagenn loves to read novels, drink red wine, and pretend she can cook. You can follow her n Twitter at @Briagenn!