Blog Community, Students

7 things I loved about junior year

By Ashley Chiappetta on Thursday, May 25, 2017

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By Ashley Chiappetta, originally posted on

First off, can I just share how good it feels to officially be a college SENIOR?

All the work I’ve done over the last few years has been challenging but rewarding, stressful but fun, crazy but awesome. I feel like a senior with everything I've completed, accomplished, and conquered. Yes, junior year is over and while it feels surreal, it also feels about time.

The last few days on campus were my some of my favorite. I loved how summer was bursting in the air and everyone on campus was giddy with the anticipation of freedom. The last few days were also super busy. I had a few final projects I was wrapping up, I had to run around finalizing study abroad stuff, and I had to move a TON of stuff back home. For those of you I didn’t get to say goodbye to — here’s my "see ya later!" I'll be back in the spring and look forward to working with the communications department again soon!

But really, this past year has been a journey. I spent two semesters in an apartment with eight girls (everyone thinks I’m crazy for this — but it wasn’t as cramped as you might think and it really was fun). I've done a lot of adulting but had crazy adventures too. My days consisted of countless hours studying, writing and producing artsy content. For the most part, I've loved almost every college moment (we can exclude the crazy nights staying up 'til 3 a.m. trying to finish math hw, missing one too many chapels, etc. lol). But overall, UNW has been good to me. I continue to learn a lot more about myself and my major.

I could go on and on, but to sum it up—here are seven things I loved about junior year.

1. Being feature editor for The Examiner

I loved this so much and will miss it. I'll be in New York City at The King's College in the fall and I graduate next spring so I won't have another chance to be on staff for our college newspaper, but I look forward to coming back as possibly a writer (we'll see what my schedule is like ;).

Being Feature Editor has been so much fun. It gave me a lot of practical experience in a field of study I love. I learned more about layout and design, coming up with different themes and article ideas, and so much more.

While press weekends kept me busy, I enjoyed it. I worked alongside some pretty great and talented people. I also had an awesome team of writers for two semesters that made Monday’s fun and my job a lot easier than I expected. It was a role I'm so glad I accepted.

Ashely holding a copy of Northwestern's student newspaper The Examiner paper
Ashely in her form room in Moyer Hall

2. Living in Moyer

Moving back to UNW this year was bittersweet. Anyone who knows me knows how much I love being home in my family's new lake house that we built but I figured with such a busy schedule, living on campus would be beneficial. So I made the move. I lived on campus in an apartment with eight girls — there was a living room, four bathrooms, four bedrooms and a full kitchen. It was fairly spacious for a college dorm, and I loved the girls I roomed with. A friend of mine reached out last year to see if I was interested in rooming with them and I'm so glad I said yes. They were so sweet and nice to live with.

It was great having a place on campus to call home, especially after long nights doing homework. It'll most likely be my last time in the UNW dorms since I’ll be studying abroad this fall and most likely finishing up my last semester commuting (so much cheaper, holla). But I'm sure I'll miss parts of it.

3. A fall semester at UNW

I won't have another fall semester at UNW. I'll miss seeing all the colors when autumn settles in. Our campus is stunning in the warm seasons.

I lived for the sunny days when people weren't rushing from class to class. It was always fun seeing friends chilling on the campus green. Plus everyone seems to be in a better, cheery mood when it's warm out. But I have Central Park to look forward to in the fall. I'm so ready.

Beautiful fall campus photo coming into campus.
Ashely in front of the Mississippi river in St. Paul, Minnesota.

4. Eagle 7 adventures

This was my first year being a part of Eagle 7 News and I loved it. I learned a lot about TV news and broadcast journalism. During my first semester, I had a great time learning how to anchor, putting together packages, and doing interviews for stories.

Second semester was even better. I grew a lot more in this field and got my own "What's Trending" segment. For it, I went on fun adventures in the Twin Cities to share content and highlight places for college students to check out. To see some of those stories, click here. I learned a lot about editing and also started vlogging (which I plan to continue and work on this summer!).

5. Hosting the Five16 Film Festival

Working with Eagle 7 gave me the awesome opportunity to be a host for UNW's Five16 Film Festival. We live streamed on CTV and pulled off a superb production that highlighted our communications and film departments on campus. To read more about that experience, click here.

Ashely with other student at Northwestern's Five 16 Film Fesitval
Ashely with the "Not Quite Noon News" radio team

6. Tuesday radio news team

My "Not Quite Noon News" radio team on Tuesdays made Tuesday/Thursday morning classes exciting. I loved tackling my first live radio show with these guys. We had some great moments. Overall, it was an awesome learning experience. I lived for the shows where we were all laughing and having a good time. I'll miss it!

7. Painting the ROCK

And finally, one of my all time favorite memories and moments of junior year was painting the iconic rock on campus for my birthday. It was spontaneous. It was adventurous. Talk about a whole lot of fun. It was something I had always wanted to do and the painting was up there for almost an ENTIRE month. Something unheard of on our campus because the rock is usually repainted by someone else quickly.

So peace out junior year and UNW, this girl is so ready to hit New York City and explore the Big Apple for a semester. I can't even tell you how excited I am to study abroad. I’m sure it will go by quickly though and before I know it I'll be graduating. Thanks UNW for helping me pursue my academic dreams — see you in the spring!!!

Ashley behind a large rock on campus with "happy birthday" painted over it

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