HAMMOND, La. – College is the time in a person’s life to develop and expand their knowledge. For graduating senior Carl Pearson, college has been a milestone that he has truly enjoyed and is sad to leave behind.
Pearson arrived at Southeastern Louisiana University (SLU) in the summer of 2011 from Farmerville, Louisiana. He came to the school on a football scholarship, playing two seasons, but it was life after football that brought the experiences he cherishes.
He and a few other guys started the fraternity PIKE on July 26, 2015. For Carl, the brotherhood that the fraternity brought him is what he will miss the most about leaving SLU. “I will miss spending time with my brothers. They have been a support system for me the past year, and we have become very close,” Pearson said.
Joining Pearson in picking up varied college experiences are Paige Collins and Dale Sanders. For Collins it was learning about life.
“Over the last four years, college has taught me several life lessons,” Collins said. “I have had to overcome obstacles in order to achieve success, learn how to manage my time appropriately. I had to learn how to live on my own. College has helped me grow as a person and become a more well rounded individual. SLU has specifically helped shape me into the person I am today.”
Sanders found he would approach college differently if he had a chance to do it over again.
“I would use the education system to equip me for what I want to pursue in life” Sanders said. “Rather than just hit the benchmark towards a degree I would arrange my classes for what I want to do.”
All the lessons learned have led the trio to putting together plans for the future.
With graduation approaching at 10 a.m. Saturday, Pearson is looking forward to tackling the challenges of life.
“The best part will be not having homework, not having to deal with teachers and tests,” Pearson said. “I like working, so not having to deal with tests and school is what I am looking forward to.”
Pearson plans to move to Texas to be near his girlfriend of almost four years, Zoe Douglas. A former college athlete herself, Douglas played two seasons of volleyball at Southeastern.
Banking on better job opportunities in Texas, Pearson plans to put his management degree to good use.
“Well my education is basically about experiences, so I’ll take my experiences and apply them to my work life and see where it goes from there,” Pearson said.
Collins may be graduating, but more schooling is in her near future.
“I am looking forward to applying everything that I have learned over the last four years as I begin the next chapter of my life,” Collins said. “Even though college is over, I am excited and ready to take on the next phase of my life. I plan on attending Physical Therapy school, so I will continue to learn and build on what I have already learned from Southeastern. It’s always a little scary starting something new, but I feel prepared and confident for the next part of life.”
For Collins, though, just because it is time to move on does not mean that her time in college will be easily forgotten.
“Southeastern has been my home away from home and I am truly thankful for my time here,” Collins said. “I will definitely miss Saturday nights in Strawberry Stadium and the overall atmosphere here at Southeastern.”