Student Blogger Grace Nordquist: My Transfer Experience at Morningside
Hi! I’m Grace Nordquist, and my Morningside experience has been a little different than others. Instead of starting out my freshman year at Morningside, I began my college journey at Iowa Central Community College. After completing my associate’s degree, I transferred to Morningside in August 2018. Being a transfer student has both its positives and negatives - I got to experience two different schools and build friendships and memories at both places, but I also had to start all over again and find my place at Morningside when most others in my year already had. But I wouldn’t change my Morningside experience for anything. When it came down to it, I chose Morningside for athletics and its location. I visited quite a few schools (I’m talking close to 20 total) but while on my recruiting visit for swimming at Morningside, I connected with the team and campus the best. The location also wasn’t too far from home which was a bonus.
I graduated from Iowa Central with a general Associate of Art’s degree, and I declared my major as mass communication with an emphasis in corporate communication when I transferred. I consider myself an outgoing and personable person (and I have never been a fan of math) which is what lead me to mass communication. I chose the corporate communication emphasis because I’m more interested in the business aspect like marketing or public relations than broadcasting and the like.
I think getting involved is the key to making the most out of your college experience. Once on campus, I didn’t hesitate to get involved and I think that’s why my experience has been enjoyable especially as a transfer student. While at Morningside, I’ve been involved in swimming, student ambassadors, OSA, Active Minds, campus ministry, ODK, volunteering, the mass communication department, Mustang athletic department, and the Morningside Experience social media pages. I also like to take advantage of the events on campus from Bingo night to attending other sporting events and plays.
My experience with the faculty has been great thus far. I’ve connected with more than just professors in my major, but other faculty and staff members as well. I feel that many of the faculty and staff truly want Morningside students to succeed and genuinely care for them.
Swimming has been a major part of my Morningside experience. It is what brought me to Morningside in the first place. I made friends that will last a lifetime and memories that I’ll never forget. My coaches genuinely care about my goals and aspirations both in and out of the pool and pushed me to be the best in both. I was honored to be a part of the largest group ever qualified to nationals in the school’s history in 2019, and also break a school record in the 100-yard butterfly. Now as a senior captain, and after 15 years as a competitive swimmer, I will compete one last time at nationals in March 2020 ending my swimming career as a Mustang.
It’s hard to choose only one experience that has topped the rest while at Morningside but if I had to, I would say my May term trip in 2019 to Italy and Greece. I always thought studying abroad would be something super cool to do, but with swimming being in both semesters I never considered it an option for me. When I heard of the May term trips abroad at Morningside, I realized that was my chance. I know some people are worried about the cost of the trip but it was worth every penny. Looking back, it’s crazy to think that I’ve been to monumental places like the Colosseum, Trevi fountain, the Acropolis and so much more. I got to explore the gorgeous scenery of the countries and was introduced to new cultures and food, not to mention the friendships I gained from the trip including one of my best friends who I might have never might if it wasn't for the trip. The May term to Italy and Greece was the experience of a lifetime and for that, it tops the charts for my best Morningside experience.
So, while my Morningside experience may have started out different than others, I made the most out of my time here. In the two-years I was here I got involved, formed relationships and friendships, made memories, traveled the world, all while getting an education and continuing the sport I love. You can’t get that at every school, but you can at Morningside if you choose to and that’s my Morningside experience.