The Minnesota native first heard of Missouri State from the lacrosse coach. “I started looking at Missouri State. I found that it was affordable to go here, more than a state school in Minnesota was. I got an academic scholarship, too, which made it better,” he said. “My senior year I knew I wanted to get away. It was a way out, and I jumped on it.”
“That was a really long car ride.”
Joey, his family and a packed Suburban made the more than 550 mile trek to Springfield this fall. “That was a really long car ride,” said Joey. But his first official day on campus was memorable for more reasons than just the car ride.
“The first day was pretty memorable—being in my own room, meeting all the people I now know on my floor, my parents leaving. That was pretty fun,” said Joey. “My mom was crying. She just gave me a hug and walked back to the car. I can’t imagine that car ride back.”
“Knowing that I can actually do this and not get overwhelmed”
Joey explains that his SOAR group and the lacrosse team helped him transition smoothly into life in Missouri: “Some people are afraid of college, I feel like, but I’ve made a lot of friends so far.”
The friends didn’t ease all the nerves about the first day of classes. “I felt so overwhelmed, but now I feel way better about my classes. That is probably one of the more memorable things: knowing that after the first couple of weeks that I can actually do this and not get overwhelmed by everything. I started to feel more comfortable,” he said.
“I sit in my room sometimes and think, ‘What do I do?’”
Joey was in for one surprise when it came to his new life as a Bear — free time. “The down time was definitely a shock,” said Joey. “I sit in my room sometimes and think, ‘What do I do?’ I get done with classes at one o’clock.”
He admits some of that extra time gets spent on homework. “It also surprised me how much I have to work in my classes. I go to every class, but it’s still a lot of outside work. I can’t skate by,” he said.
“Once I got my first test back, I started thinking about what else I wanted to do.”
As an undecided major, Joey is using his classes to figure out what he wants to do. He’s already decided that a pre-law track might not be for him like he thought. “I thought I would like it, but I didn’t. Once I got my first test back, I started thinking about what else I wanted to do,” he said.
His plan is to take classes in areas that he’s interested in to narrow down the career field and set him on the track for a getting a good job after college. “Hopefully, it [a job] will be something that I love—that’s the goal—and finding that in college,” he said.
Read more about Joey's experiences at MSU on My Place at Missouri State.