Welcome to a series of stories that basically make up my autobiography. It’s not entirely thorough, but I’ll do the best I can with the memories locked away inside my head. Could be therapeutic for me. Could be humorous for you. Either way, enjoy…
Previously on Life Story… I had a really good friend in my freshman year. It was a friendship that I failed.
When it comes to the classes that one takes during those formidable undergrad years, a lot of the time it can be easy to remember what was taken, but not when. The classes that I vividly remember taking during my freshman year are memorable because, for the most part, they were those gen ed courses that everyone had to take.
It was good to get these out of the way early since I had yet to decide on a major. Well… I hadn’t decided on a permanent major.
Being a Baptist college, Bluefield required each of its students to take three courses that fell under Religion and Philosophy. This included at least one Old Testament class, one New Testament class, and one Philosophy class. In my first year, I decided to take the introductory courses for Old and New Testaments.
Old Testament came in my first semester. And it came early. 8:00 a.m. every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Growing up in church, of course I had exposure to the entire Bible. But I’d be lying if I said that the church I grew up in spent as much time in the Old Testament as it did in the New. So this class was a great way for me to start exploring, in depth, the rich tapestry that is woven between the law and the prophets. It was really just a taste. Dr. Crawford, the Old Testament professor, encouraged me to continue exploring later with more focused classes on Psalms and Wisdom Literature and the Major and Minor Prophets.
New Testament was reserved for my spring semester, freshman year. It was also one of those 8:00 classes. I think they schedule these required courses that early to weed out the ones who just aren’t gonna make it. New Testament was taught by Dr. Lyle, who was also Bluefield’s Campus Minister. As with the Old Testament, this intro class allowed us to explore what the New Testament has to say from the Gospels through Revelation. Again, I was inspired to delve deeper with classes that focused on Paul’s letters and the book of Revelation by itself.
Those were the only religion classes I took in that first year. But there were other intro classes that were required in that first year.
I remember taking a math course (Algebra of some kind?) with a professor who liked to talk until she was completely out of breath. Then she would keep on talking as if she still had air in her lungs. Each class period was like a game of waiting to see if this was the time she would pass out.
I took a physical science class with another student who regularly fell asleep. Each class period was like a game of waiting to see how long it would take for her to pass out.
I took a composition class… at least I think that’s what it would have been called. It was basically writing. I crushed that one. Probably why I’m now the famous blogger you see before you.
I also took a literature class, which was actually interesting. As I made the transition to college, I discovered that I enjoyed reading much more than I had in high school. That helped me to do well this time around. I wrote a paper on George Orwell’s Animal Farm. And I actually read the book this time. No Cliff’s Notes for this freshman.
And then there was Freshman Seminar. I’m still not sure what the point of that one was.
I know I’m leaving some classes out from that year. But it’s been 20 years… who knows what else I took?