Nov 18, 2008

CFAWs reflect on a memorable experience

by Abby Armbruster

Liberty University hosts college-bound high school students twice a semester for College For A Weekend (CFAW). Students are encouraged to help the school showcase Liberty to a slew of potential students. However, the request is often met with groans from residential students forgetting the experiences the prospective students have may impact their college decisions. CFAW visitors Shiloh Finch, 16, and Katy Callahan, 16, used the weekend to help plan for their future college careers.

“(Liberty students) have a lot of freedom, but not enough to do a lot of wrong,” said Finch.

Linwood, N.J. native Callahan also said she had freedom on Liberty’s campus.

“I really liked it … I was never bored.”

Finch, a junior at Atlantic Shores Christian School in Chesapeake, Va., said that although there are a lot of rules, “there’s purpose (to the rules), and you can see the purpose. (The freedom I received) was almost like my choice, but my benefit, too.”

Both girls had heard of Liberty through their high schools. Finch had representatives for Liberty come to her school, while Callahan had friends who had been to CFAW and enjoyed the experience.

When first arriving on campus, Callahan said she felt at ease since she had been on campus before. She admitted that coming for the weekend was not an issue, but staying with someone she did not know made her nervous. Finch, on the other hand, arrived at Liberty for the first time.

When entering dorm 27-3, Finch stated that everyone was “smiley” and once she talked to Resident Assistant Rachael Johnson, “I felt like I went to school here.”

Convocation, a commonly exciting, yet nerve-racking experience for first-time students, left quite an impression on both CFAW attendees. Callahan noted the abundant number of students Liberty had under one roof, while Finch focused on the speaker, Dr. Ergun Caner.

“He really knew his crowd, and he related to me,” she said.

Finch declared that seeing the college life at Liberty was her favorite part of the weekend.

“I talked to a lot of people, and I didn’t meet one person who I thought was a jerk,” she said. “Everyone I’ve met is really nice and normal.”

Callahan also said understanding the students was important due to the general reputation Liberty has for its strict conservativeness.
“It’s almost like everyone fits in, no mater how different you are,” Finch stated.

Both Callahan and Finch saw the men’s hockey team play against the University of Delaware. Neither girl had been to a traditional game and found the spectators the best part of the experience. Callahan said the rules were easy to follow and the game was intense. Finch said she especially loved the funny comments screamed from various fans during the game, usually to the other team.
Both ladies also attended the Downhere concert in the Schilling Center on Saturday. The girls agreed that the music was good noting the twist on traditional music with opening act the Michael Gungor Band, and the rock sound of Downhere.

Both girls are now considering Liberty as one of their top schools for post-graduation plans. Callahan, a senior at Atlantic Christian School, has already applied to Liberty for the fall of 2009 and does not have many concerns with the school. Finch is anxious about the four-hour distance from home. Despite the long commute, the girls are now considering attending Liberty because of their experiences during CFAW.


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