As I am coming to the end of my junior year here at Texas A&M, I am looking forward to one time-honored tradition—getting my Aggie ring!
Over winter break, I got the email I had been waiting for notifying me to check to see if I was eligible to order my ring. Of course, I already knew that after the fall semester ended that I had taken more than 90 hours of classes, which meant I did meet the requirement.
So, I set up an appointment to go in person to get sized and, of course, to take my picture in front of the ring statue with the chalkboard sign—another Aggie tradition!
It was a surreal moment that the day had already arrived and it made me realize how fast my time at Texas A&M has gone by.
Now I am in a suspenseful wait, anticipating the day in April that I will get to receive the ring!
I am excited that my family is coming on Ring Day to help me celebrate my big achievement with me.
The ring itself holds a lot of symbolism.
Every element on the ring has a meaning and even the direction you wear the ring does, too—when you receive your ring, you wear it with the class year facing you to symbolize that your time at Texas A&M is not yet finished; during graduation, a ceremony is led in which you turn the ring around, signifying that you are going out into the world as an Aggie.
The Aggie ring is a great way to recognize fellow Aggies anywhere in the world. When a fellow ambassador and I went abroad last summer, we were recognized as Aggies at an airport in London because of her ring!
The Aggie ring is such an amazing way to unite fellow Aggies and the tradition is one of my favorite at Texas A&M!
As sad as I am to see such a fun and busy summer end, I am super excited for my third year at TAMU!
The past few months have been packed with adventure and meaningful experiences. To start off the summer break, Angelica, a fellow CVM Ambassador and mentor, and I attended a two week pre-vet program in Chintsa, South Africa!
We had the time of our lives and got to interact with so many different types of animals and amazing people. It was my first time abroad, and it made me want to travel again as soon as possible!
My favorite part of the trip was the interactions we had with the giraffes. One was with a giraffe named Abby that lived on a reserve and had been raised by humans since birth because him was orphaned. Abby is a very friendly giraffe and loves people, especially when they feed him. We each got to take turns doing so, and Abby even licked my forehead!
Another exciting experience was that we got to be involved with a giraffe capture in an effort to relocate a male giraffe to a different reserve, which allows conservationists to maintain a diverse gene pool!
During the rest of the summer, I stayed busy by working at the local veterinary
clinic I have been volunteering at since I was in high school. One of my volunteer activities was also with a church-based organization called Summer Lunch, for which volunteers set up a pavilion tent at an elementary school park each weekday during the summer to distribute paper bag lunches to children in need of a meal, as well as to their other family members. It was such a rewarding experience for me because I love working with kids, and being able to provide them with something so important to their everyday lives was wonderful.
Another volunteer job I had was at the Dallas Zoo! I enjoyed working with and learning about exotic animals so much in South Africa that I wanted to continue it.
At the zoo, I worked at their Animal Nutrition Center. I got behind-the-scenes experience in helping to prepare the diets for the zoo’s thousands of animals! It was very interesting to see what each animal ate and how much food they needed to consume on a daily basis. I plan to continue volunteering there whenever I go back home for school breaks!