• Holly Miranda

Finding Home Where You Least Expect It

Updated: Jul 30, 2020

If you were to sit and tell me in high school that I would “find my people” at my university’s center for religious and spiritual life, I would have openly and unapologetically laughed in your face. I have never considered myself to be a religious person. Before I came to Elon, or was introduced to the Truitt Center, I frankly had an aversion to religion.

Me, Amy, Joey, Tripp, and Amanda at Hillel before a Bagel Brunch (Jan. 2018)

Well, me from the past, surprise!

I became involved with the Truitt Center after accepting a job with Elon Hillel fall of my freshman year. At first, I was nervous about nativigating a Jewish space since I was not Jewish. However, what I found was a warm, welcoming home for students. My first semester with Hillel full of learning about high holidays, fundamental beliefs, and weekly practices. I had found my own little community there with then Rabbi Meir and then Director, Jess. These relationships proved to be invaluable later that semester when my mother was diagnosed with cancer. Having support from Hillel was essential. In a time of stress and anxiety, I was able to keep my feet on the ground.

In my sophomore year, I became involved with TC and started interacting with the staff who worked there. Due to the nature of Hillel, I was kept at the house for most of my shifts. That year, though, I started doing more collaborations with the Truitt Center. Immediately, I was surrounded by intelligent, kind-hearted people who genuinely cared about me. Similar to my freshman year, I hit a bit of slump with my mental health, and the connections I made at the Truitt Center made everything feel okay, even when it wasn’t.

Coming back from abroad the fall of my junior year was difficult. The transition to being back in the United States, let alone Elon, was incredibly hard to navigate. Add in some heavy family stuff, I was drowning from my heavy heart. Everyone in the Truitt Center (student staff, pro-staff, and chaplains) tossed me a life preserver when I needed it the most.

Home is a place to go to on bad days and great days and knowing that you never have to carry a burden alone. I can confidently say that If I did not get involved in the Truitt Center I don’t know if I would still be at Elon or have done so well here. I am one of the many examples that you do not need to be relgious to be apart of the Truitt Center.

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