Exactly 6 years ago, I had everything packed up into my car and started driving west with my sorority sister, Whitney. Our destination was Scottsdale, AZ. I had only been to Arizona once before during spring break with my family in high school. The only thing I remembered was the mall (Fashion Square), getting sunburned by the pool, seeing all the stars in Sedona, and feeling a little carsick from the Pink Jeep Tour. Little did I know I would return several years later. I always thought I would move east to New York or Chicago after graduation. When I accepted a job offer in Arizona, it was supposed to be a temporary place, stay for 2 years and move back to Chicago type thing. 2 years turned into 3, 3 turned into 4… and you get the idea.
Over the last 6 years, I’ve slowly lost my Chic-aaa-go accent (still a little upset about that), discovered my love for hiking, furthered my love for food (have you seen my Insta account?), have gotten in the best shape of my life, experienced several firsts from camping to going to the Super Bowl, and learned to not stress so much. Most importantly, I don’t think I’ve truly been happy until about 2 years ago. I now believe that everything happens for a reason and while it’s important to have goals, there are several paths to get there. Everybody’s journey is different.
Speaking of journeys, I’m excited to publicly announce that I am moving to Atlanta in a few months to pursue my MBA at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School! This has been 10 years in the making and I’m not sure that it’s really sunk in yet that it’s finally happening. My first trip to Atlanta was in November when I went to interview and I was in and out in less than 24 hours. I also had the opportunity to go back for a weekend in March for Welcome Weekend. From what I’ve seen so far, I think it’ll be a great place for me to pursue my education, be exposed to new things and experiences, further grow personally and professionally, and meet some pretty awesome people. I mean, no snow? Check. Foodie city? Check. Good shopping? Check. Not in the middle of nowhere? Check. …I know, priorities.
To be serious, I felt at home as soon as I stepped on campus. I didn’t feel like I had to be someone I wasn’t and left the weekend with new friends who I’ve stayed in touch with since. I also met my roommate and we secured our new home for the next 2 years. I’m going to take a little time off to travel (Chicago, Iceland, DC, and possibly more of the east coast) and relax before I start school. I know the next year is going to be crazy and that it’s going to go by in a blink of an eye. I have no idea where I’ll be in two years and while it can be scary, I find it exciting. I never thought I’d move to Arizona and I never thought I’d move to the south. I’ve learned to never say never, because you just never know. The one thing I do know is that it’ll be an exciting ride.