Five Years in New Orleans

“I’m not going to lay down in words the lure of this place. Every great writer in the land, from Faulkner to Twain to Rice to Ford, has tried to do it and fallen short. It is impossible to capture the essence, tolerance, and spirit of south Louisiana in words and to try is to roll down a road of clichés, bouncing over beignets and beads and brass bands and it just is what it is.”

Chris Rose

Beignets, beads, brass bands, and more don’t even make a dent in describing this city. My four years at Tulane and unexpected pandemic-gap-year in New Orleans, Louisiana truly are difficult to put into words. I learned so much about my values and priorities, my interests and passions, and overall, myself during these transformative five years. And I can confidently say that I did it all in one of the most fun and culturally rich cities in the world!

For me, choosing a college wasn’t just about what name looked prestigious or what majors were offered. I focused on the school’s overall feel and attitude far more than these classic attributes. When I stepped foot on Tulane’s campus for the first time in October 2015, I saw students smiling and laughing, while they also seemed academically engaged and motivated to get involved on campus. This balance was exactly what I wanted after four years in a cutthroat academic environment. Plus, the recent Number 1 Party School ranking didn’t hurt either!

I knew when I moved to New Orleans that this would be a temporary environment for me, but I immediately fell in love. The Tulane bubble kept me busy for a while, but any time I ventured outside of it, I was struck by the energy of the city. The festivals, restaurants, shops, parks, museums, and other attractions in New Orleans are great for a short visit, but they are even better when experienced during an indefinite stay. 

When I came back down to the Big Easy for my post-grad year, I grew connected to this city even more. I was *finally* not living in a tiny dorm room on campus, and having access to cars via friends helped me branch out into the rest of the city as well. Though my options for what to do were limited due to the pandemic and even Mardi Gras was canceled (gasp!), I explored new areas of the region for the first time and found myself a regular at new coffee shops, workout studios, and restaurants that I had never known existed before.

While my chapter in New Orleans is over for now, I know that this city will always hold a special place in my heart. The experiences I had and the friends I made gave me a lifetime of memories, but I’ll still be back for more in the future!

Now, it’s time for my next adventure – more details coming soon!

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