What Your Tour Guide Failed to Mention About Lipscomb.

This school is not what it seems, but that’s not always a bad thing.

Let us begin with a parable of Lipscomb.

“every part of life is weird in it’s own way; you just get used to the weirdness after a while.”

Today, I graduated from Lipscomb. This place possesses a weirdness that has acted like a greenhouse for my growth, and after four years here, my personal root system is so deeply intertwined with this school that I can’t imagine surviving without it.

One of my favorite parts of Lipscomb has been working as a tour guide. However, there’s a lot of stories I can’t quite tell or thoughts I can’t quite share in that job. I started out writing this as an expose of the stuff Lipscomb doesn’t quite advertise, but honestly, I just want to tell you just how thankful I am for this university. Maybe you’ll think I’m dead wrong with all this, but hopefully it’ll at least give you a good laugh.

Now, let’s talk about that parable from the beginning of this thing.

I had a strange and wonderful experience at Lipscomb. Throughout my time at the school, I was a part of incredible thing after incredible thing. (feel free to skip the rest of this paragraph, TL;DR I was very blessed by Lipscomb).

I joined the ranks of a social club (local fraternity) just as it hit its stride, watched it grow to the largest club on campus, and then serve as its vice president my senior year. I studied abroad in Florence, Italy, and went on mission trips to Perth, Australia and Daytona Beach, Florida. I was a part of two incredible departments at Lipscomb: Theology and Philosophy. In both I had incredible professors who poured tons into me, both personally and academically. I worked as a tour guide to talk about the school I love, and I served on a committee under the President of the school. On top of that, I did all of that without paying a dime of tuition thanks to an incredible scholarship. I love this school, and I couldn’t be more thankful.

The fact of the matter is that parts of student life at Lipscomb don’t quite match up to what the school administration says is proper behavior.

I’ve been a student leader on campus in many ways, and through that, have felt immense pressure to set an example that exactly fit their model. On top of that, I’ve had a bit of a strange relationship with the people who aren’t living up to the student handbook. I spent a crap ton of time this year stressing about how to deal with that, and frankly, wanting to appease both groups.

Here’s the thing. My sophomore year, I met with a mentor of mine on a weekly basis. He changed my life and allowed me to get through that semester. Those memories are some of the only things that have brought me to tears over graduation.

There’s not a lot of people who have seen me cry during college, but the ones who have are some of the biggest blessings in my life. This school has surrounded me with people I feel comfortable around, and those relationships will last for life.

Before I graduated, I received a journal from my social club that was full of pages upon pages of people thanking me for my influence in their life. I was lucky enough to leave a mark on this school and receive a testament of what I did here (or at least just the positive stuff).

The important part of college is not what I did or didn’t do on my Saturday nights.

The important part of college is the relationships I built. It’s the guys I led a small group for this past fall semester. It’s the dudes in Theta Psi I’ve been able to pour into, and it’s the mentors and friends who have poured so much into me.

Now, I get to leave this school with those relationships supporting me, as well as a bunch of other stories I could tell that the administration wouldn’t love, and seek to fill the rest of the pages in that journal with people who are better for knowing me.

Deuces Lipscomb, it’s been real fun, and I’ve been real happy to be here, but now I’m out of here.

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Writer. Teacher. Pastor. Interpreter of strange times, and aspiring polymath.

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Lorne Jaques

Writer. Teacher. Pastor. Interpreter of strange times, and aspiring polymath.