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We’ve all heard about that moment. You know what I mean. You step foot onto a college campus and it just feels right. You know, without any doubt, that this is where you belong.

We all want to walk onto campus and feel like this.

Well … I never experienced that. I toured Hopkins over Spring Break of my junior year and I loved it, but I wasn’t in love with it. I was excited, and I was definitely planning on applying, but I didn’t feel sure.

Do I look confused in this photo? Because I certainly felt confused.

I did an overnight in September of my senior year as part of the Hopkins Overnight Multicultural Exchange (HOME) program. The people I met were lovely, and I felt happy, but I didn’t apply Early Decision because I still wasn’t sure if I could commit. I was holding out for that perfect moment, and the moment never came. There was always something off — I spent some time doing homework in the Hut, but I couldn’t find a workstation near an outlet. I ate a great dinner at the FFC, but I didn’t love the dorm I stayed in.

The Hutzler Reading Room in Gilman, where I wrote an entire essay during HOME.

I never had my moment, but when acceptances started arriving and I was weighing my options, Hopkins was the only university where I could really see myself. It never quite felt perfect, but I knew that I could be happy here. Now, a semester in, I’m absolutely certain: Hopkins is my home. Hopkins isn’t perfect, but it was the right choice for me.

It’s not gonna be perfect!

So don’t hold out for that perfect moment, because no university is perfect. You may not feel ecstatic when you tour your dream school, but can you at least imagine yourself living there? Where would you study? What sorts of classes would you take? What dorm would you like to live in? If you can visualize a life, and that life makes you feel content, then you may have found your home for the next four years.

I know it’s hard, but try not to worry too much. When you’ve made the right choice, you’ll know.