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The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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Katarina Rothhorn
Katarina Rothhorn
Features Writer

The first message I ever sent from my Northern Michigan University sanctioned email was to the editor-in-chief of the North Wind asking if there was any way I could join the staff. Classes hadn't even...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Students protest against Israel-Hamas war with campus encampment
Dallas WiertellaApril 30, 2024

Opinion—Why moving out of your hometown is the best choice you can make

Marquette
Ashley Beronja/NW ADVENTURE IS OUT THERE—Of all the places explored during my time at NMU, my favorite by far is Presque Isle. Whether sitting in my car staring at the lake, or walking around the isle enjoying the breeze, Presque Isle brings me a sense of peace that will forever stay with me.

Moving away from home can be hard. Whether leaving for school, work or just wanting to get out of your hometown, leaving behind a piece of you can be overwhelming in some way or another. However, despite leaving something behind that is so familiar, the thrill and rush of something new makeup for that sense of loss immensely. 

The first time I came to the U.P. was in May of 2018. I had been done with high school for about a month and preparing to move up to Marquette for college. Travelling wasn’t something that scared me, as I had done it before plenty of times, but what terrified me was the idea of living in a new area all alone.

I come from a close-knit family. The majority of my immediate family lives within a 20-minute driving distance from my house which always meant family visits whenever and wherever, at least before COVID-19. Coming from such a close family and moving away to a new area was a hard idea to grasp. The isolation from everyone and having to FaceTime just to see my dogs is still something I struggle with to this day, and I’ve been in Marquette for three years. 

I come from Battle Creek, Michigan, otherwise known as the “Cereal City of the USA.” It’s not huge, smaller than Grand Rapids but bigger than Marquette. When you wake up in the morning to get ready for school or work, no matter if you’re downtown near the factories or not, you can smell fresh cereal being made at either Kellogg’s or Post. I won’t lie that I miss waking up to the smell of cereal, laughing with my mom in the car as we tried to guess what cereal was being made—but the overwhelming amount of violence that occurred in the city is something I will never miss.

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I remember during my junior year of high school we had an entire week off school for bomb threats that were called. At first, we all took it as a joke, thinking it was just a petty call that was made to stir up trouble. But one day off became two, then three, then the next thing we knew, it was the entire week. It wasn’t unusual to have something like that happen, but at one point does it become too much?

Coming from a city full of violence to a city that is quiet was a culture shock, to say the least. Going from hiding everything in your car to not worry if you left your car unlocked was something out of the ordinary for me. From being on edge all my life, finally being able to relax was something I have always wanted.

Despite being away from family and friends back home, moving eight hours away is something I know I will never regret. Many of my friends who have come to NMU with me have agreed that the beauty of Marquette makes up for the time away from family, friends and the memories of our first homes. While it’s hard to know that driving to your grandparent’s house isn’t as easy as getting in the car and arriving 10 minutes later, technology is something I have grown to appreciate the older I get.

Marquette, Michigan is my new home. When I wake up and look out my window I can smell the lakeside air and see Sugarloaf Mountain in the distance. When walking to class at night, I don’t feel worried about being picked up or having someone steal my things. Of course, wherever I go crime will still exist, but going from one extreme to the other was something I never knew that I needed. 

Coming to NMU has opened the door to so many new possibilities for me. I’ve learned to be a better person since moving away from home, learned to become independent and discover new things that I enjoy. Despite being away from my hometown, the memories I make in Marquette still connect me back with my hometown.

Editor’s Note: The North Wind is committed to offering a free and open public forum of ideas, publishing a wide range of viewpoints to accurately represent the NMU student body. This is a staff column, written by an employee of the North Wind. As such, it expresses the personal opinions of the individual writer, and does not necessarily reflect the position of the North Wind Editorial Board.

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