When I was thinking of what to write my senior column about, I decided to talk about what made my time at Binghamton University so special, which were the events I went to and the experiences I had.
When I first decided I was going to BU, I remember reading about Late Nite Binghamton online and thinking it sounded perfect for me. I remember the first time I went to Late Nite. There was a tinfoil-folding contest and whoever got the most likes on Facebook by 1 a.m. would win a prize: a Lego set of the White House. My friends and I ran all around the dorms, asking anyone we could find in a lounge or the hallway to vote for my creation — the sun from “Tangled.” I have so many memories of making fun crafts, getting to know the eclectic staff members and genuinely feeling like Late Nite was made for me. I went to Late Nite every weekend since I was a freshman until the end of my senior year. I made so many Pinterest-worthy crafts, danced the night away, watched amazing movies, played fun games and got to have so many unique experiences that I never got to have before because of Late Nite. Late Nite was the perfect place to learn new things, try new things and have fun doing it.
Another memorable experience that I had at BU was the time when I went to Washington, D.C. with Student Support Services (SSS). I happened to check my email in the middle of the summer and it said that there was going to be a trip to Washington, D.C. with SSS. I instantly signed up and called my best friend to tell him about it. We got accepted for the trip and it was one of the biggest highlights of my time in college. We took a bus down to Washington, D.C. and very appropriately watched “National Treasure: Book of Secrets.” We stayed in a hotel, which is always exciting, and visited many cultural and historical sites. We went to the Smithsonian’s National Zoo, the White House, the International Spy Museum, the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial, the Hard Rock Cafe and so much more. I made a lot of friends on the trip, bringing me closer to the SSS community that became such a pivotal part of my experience in college.
I remember thinking that I wouldn’t be able to go trick-or-treating again when I was in high school. To my delight, in my freshman year, the French Club sent us an email inviting the group to go trick-or-treating. It was so much fun being able to dress up and get candy with my friends. We thought the whole thing was so funny. Many of the families in the houses we visited were so supportive and said that they love it when the SUNY kids come to trick or treat. Memories of going trick-or-treating in college are really special to me.
Every fall, I would go apple-picking with the SSS community, which became a tradition. We took a bus to a farm where we would pick apples, take lots of Instagram-worthy pictures and spend quality time with our friends. We had delicious food including fresh-baked apple pie, sweet BBQ pulled pork and creamy potato soup. The workers on the farm were extremely kind and generous. My friends and I saw a boy riding a tractor and I said, “Hey can you give us a ride?” He said yes and drove us all around the farm. The tractor was really fast and we had so much fun getting to explore the farm. They had a store where they sold all sorts of neat stuff, including fresh ingredients, apple desserts and country-style home decor. I really cherish those trips where I got to catch up with friends and have fun in the fresh air.
I want to thank my mom, Alan Liang, Sam Backner and all of my other friends for making my time at BU so special.
Cristina Zirilli is a senior majoring in psychology.