Rollercoasters come in many shapes and forms, and an impromptu trip to Six Flags America an hour away from campus reminded me of that. There were roller coasters where you stood up, laid down, were upside down, or right side up, and they all challenged us, scared us, made us laugh, and made for an amazing day. With my senior year underway and graduation approaching, I realized that it is spontaneous trips, activities, and the ups and downs in between that have defined my time here at Hopkins, kind of like the coasters.
Freshman Year: The Joker
The Joker’s Jinx at Six Flags was an extremely quick and loop-filled coaster that finished before you could let out your first scream. The Joker, much like my Freshman year, got off to quick start and had so many ups and downs and twists and turns. Freshman year, before you can even take a break and take a look around, is over. Just like the Joker, my Freshman year was fun-filled and spontaneous, but ended before I even noticed it started. The Joker’s main attraction was the quick start at the beginning of the coaster, shooting you from 0-60 mph in 3 seconds. That is exactly how Freshman year felt, strapping myself in for the ride, making sure all my belongings were with me, and then taking off into the ride of a lifetime.
Sophomore Year: Apocalypse: The Last Stand
The selling-point of the Apocalypse, and its namesake, is the fact that you stand up on the coaster and face the Apocalypse head on. First off, standing on a coaster is a must try for everyone. Secondly, like my sophomore year, I stood tall through the whole thing. Sophomore year was not easy for me, with academic struggles defining my first semester. In what seemed like the end of the world, I stood up tall and rode onward. People always talk about how the middle years of college are hard and difficult. My sophomore year was about standing up and taking on what came up next, no matter what it was, and coming out on the other side knowing I just stood through being tossed and turned and conquered the year.
Junior Year: The BATWING Coaster
The main similarity between the BATWING and my junior year is the fact that I flew through it. I was so excited for junior year, having just finished my first internship, because I knew what I was doing at Hopkins more than ever. I knew where all my classes were, I knew who my friends were, and I knew who I was as a student. My friends all had moved off of campus, and we were approaching adulthood at alarming speeds. The BATWING reminded me of my junior year, mostly because we waited in line for a long time to ride it and I was so prepared for it.
Senior Year: SUPERMAN Ride of Steel
Senior year basically makes you feel like you are Superman. You know the best ways to get around, the best places to eat, the best places to study, and you are a savior for lost first year students on campus. The SUPERMAN ride brings you to a steep point of the coaster at the beginning, nearly 20 stories up. While this seems crazy, it was the best way to view the park and everything about to happen on the ride. While SUPERMAN was fast and scary and crazy, it also showed me what twists and turns were to come and allowed me to see all of the rides I had already conquered that day.