by Kara Nyberg
They say that when you go away to college you begin to figure out who you truly are. For me it offered a great learning experience, and not just academically. This past school year that I spent in St. Joseph, Minnesota, really taught me how to adjust from my beloved woods of Northern Minnesota, to the drastic change to open plains of farm country.
Growing up in rural Bovey gave me the experiences that are hard to be gained anywhere else in the world. Grand Rapids and the surrounding communities have good reason to pride themselves on what they have to offer, such as lakes, trails, camping, and fishing- activities that I took for granted until I went away to school.
Quite often when people asked where I was from, their reaction would be one of jealousy and most always was filled with an expression of how great it must have been to grow up there. It gets cold in central Minnesota but when people would complain about that or the snow, I would assure them it was far worse up north and that people there would still be taking full advantage of the outdoors. There was disbelief when I told them that people actually drove snowmobiles to school and then parked them outside after a good snowfall.
My parents were good about calling throughout the year to let me know about when the ice on the lake was safe to walk on or when it would finally go out. Those calls were reminders that my Northern Minnesota was always there and reassured me that it would be just as great as I remembered it was whenever I went back. Now that I am finally back home, I plan on taking advantage of summer up north.
Kara Nyberg is a 2008 graduate of Grand Rapids High School. She has just finished her freshman year at the College of St. Benedict in St. Joseph, Minnesota. She is planning to major in Communication and minor in Political Science and English.
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