Where Am I Now- Blaise Reader

Where Am I Now- Blaise Reader

Blaise Reader, alumni

It now being November, my first semester in college (disregarding CCP) is coming to a close. Being on main campus here at Ohio State is everything I had hoped it would be. Currently, I am majoring in English with a concentration in literature, film, and pop culture studies with a minor in Art. Having a lot of the normal first- and second-year classes out of the way due to my time at Shawnee, I have had a quite relaxing semester that I am thankful for, as my classes not being overwhelming has allowed me to adjust to the new environment easier.
With this degree being very flexible, I am hoping to return to one of my passions of journalism and write for a publication covering the peoples and their art and culture around me. I have other thoughts too of possibly teaching or staying around the university for graduate school, but for now I am just looking to a four-year degree to get into the field and begin to write again! My true dream would be to document culture, such as art and specifically music in whatever area I end up living in through photography and writing.  I am truly thankful for my experience in Cadence because this is where my main passions stemmed from. I would most definitely credit Cadence for pushing me into my infatuation and perusal of photography and writing. The first camera I picked up and the first articles I wrote were because of Cadence, and I will forever be grateful for being put on this path.
Transitioning into college has been quite easy for me, as my Junior and Senior years prepared me rather well with CCP. The weirdest thing has just been living independently in a new place. I was beyond glad to get into OSU, as it was my first choice and I have always wanted to end up in Columbus, but it is quite different here than home. That is not necessarily a bad thing though, as home has its ups and downs. Regardless, I am thankful as well for my experience in Waverly and at the high school. As much as I berate the area and some other things there, I do not think I would have wanted to grow up anywhere else. Coming of age in a small town is usually looked down upon, but I think you can learn some great lessons from it. You learn to know how to entertain yourself, as there is almost quite literally nothing to do but cause problems in Walmart or sit in a parking lot. Things are simple in that setting, but also sometimes trivial with everyone knowing each other. As much as I act like I resent Pike County, I am glad I grew up there. All my friends and my favorite staff at the school have truly shaped me into the person that I am today and put me onto a great path early in my life. Even though I’m glad I experienced the small-town life, I encourage everyone to try to escape it at some point. Having experienced night and day going back between Pike County and downtown Columbus, I see that you need to know what both are like. You never know what you’re missing until you leave and see other things.
On a note relating to getting out of the small-town life, I encourage everyone to pursue what they legitimately want to do as well. Through the years until I joined Cadence coincidentally, I had believed I was going to go into either Computer Engineering or Computer Science, with my eyes locked on those six figures. Growing up though, I had the epiphany that the money does not matter whatsoever. Nowadays, you are going to find a job in almost anything you can think of, and every degree has its use. I feel it is often discouraged, at least down there, to go for certain things, being stressed to you that some degrees are useless and you’re not going to find a job using your passions. I do not think that could be more wrong, and if you follow those ideals you will end up hurting yourself in the end and regretting it all when you are older. Being in Columbus in this academic sphere has just made me realize that you desperately need to do what you wish, as that is the most important.
All in all, I am doing great up here. I am enjoying my classes, finding interests and loves, and finding out more about myself. Living here is great, as there is an infinite number of things to do. Concert season has also done me well, as I have gone to six so far, and have three more this year. These include Faye Webster, Japanese Breakfast, Phoebe Bridgers, Idles, Oso Oso, Dayglow, Macseal, Born Without Bones, Alex G, and Tyler the Creator.  My exhaustingly endless list of hobbies continues to expand, and I am growing as a person as well. If I am to offer any advice to those who might read the Cadence, it would pertain mostly to enjoying what you have while you have it. In the area, I would go to say that Waverly is one of the better places you can be, and there is staff there that truly cares about all the students and what they are pursuing. The resources are there, and I would encourage students to utilize them and go out of their way to form and build relationships with their favorite teachers or counselors. These connections will last, trust me, and they will be very useful to you in the end. Especially once you get closer to the academic and professional world, knowing how to make these connections and build relationships will go a long way.
On top of all of that, you should just enjoy your time as a high schooler. Of course, everyone says it (it’s quite the cliché), but those four years are really gone in the blink of an eye. I still feel like I’m a freshman walking into the high school to go to first period for the first time, and I think you should cherish those times while you have them. We all grow up way too fast, and you need to value what you have now. More advice, academically, would be to push yourself and think to the future. Still to this day, Advanced Math with Mr. Biggs first period my Junior year, was the hardest class I have ever taken, and I might have learned the most from it. I know he no longer teaches in the high school, but that class really taught me how to work. Not just how to memorize your terms and know enough to pass whatever quiz and then forget and move on, but how to truly work. It was a grueling experience to wake up every day and have Pre-Calc with Biggs at eight A.M., but I swear by it that I needed to take that class. Although it was hard and I had the first F of my life for half the first nine-weeks, it taught me that sometimes you just need to put your head down and grind out whatever is looming over your head. That is also something I had to come to terms with rather quickly, when I began to take higher level courses. Not everything is going to be easy, and you need to get past the difficult things to get to what you want to be doing. So, I would encourage you to challenge yourself academically and, in your life, as much as you can as there are lessons there that you will carry with you for years upon years. Despite how hard things will be in the moment, it is just a class. You will survive, although your sanity might be fractured for a short period. But nevertheless, you will live to see another day. A grade is just a number at the end of the day, so try as hard as you can, but of course do not lose sleep over it if you do not have to.