It hasn’t been long since I transferred to Ohio State — or perhaps I just haven’t realized that it has. It doesn’t feel like it’s been long since last fall because I found a big, happy family away from my home soon after I came to OSU from Manipal University in India. As a student, I had a jar full of worries and concerns when I first came to OSU. Ignorant of the new culture and new environment, I wasn’t sure what was I getting into, but one thing I knew was that I was enthusiastic and optimistic about things that were in store for me.
Now, you might be wondering what this has to do with the meaning of being a Buckeye. Believe me when I tell you, this was the first step I took toward realizing what it meant for me to be a Buckeye: the crucial step which brought me closer to understanding that being a Buckeye was a responsibility for me that I took pride in.
The essence of the word “Buckeye” is deeply rooted in OSU’s rich culture and traditions which unite all of us under the spirit of a shared sense of belonging and an unparalleled appreciation for our alma mater. If you know Carmen Ohio in its entirety, then following lines will put you in the mood of Buckeye spirit.
“These jolly days of priceless worth,
By far the gladdest days on earth,
soon will pass and we not know
how dearly we love Ohio.”
These four lines from Carmen Ohio are more than just lyrics of the song. These lines reflect upon one of the true meanings of being a Buckeye, and that is to acknowledge the fact that the time you will spend here at The Ohio State University will surely be one hell of a ride full of laughter, tears (of joy, obviously), new relationships and cherished memories. And this is not something that anyone will impose on you to acknowledge, instead you will realize it yourself with the passage of time.
Maybe one day it will just hit you when you see the diversity, excellence and positive energy around you on campus, or when you graduate along with thousands of other students and you’ll realize that you had the glorious opportunity to be an integral part of something much bigger than you. Sooner or later you will realize what it means for you to be a Buckeye, and that is when you will fall short of words to describe it to others (including your fellow Buckeyes) like I am right now.
Being a Buckeye is not about you or me, instead it’s about all of us and how we come together to show our support and love for one another. It’s about how we constantly and selflessly strive towards creating a positive impact on the society and the world. Being a Buckeye is all about paying it forward — may it be happiness, knowledge, experience, or an affectionate gesture.
For me, being a Buckeye is an inseparable part of my identity. Being a Buckeye is what gives me a purpose for my actions. It is what defines my college culture and traditions through my actions. “Buckeye” in itself is a powerful word which cheers me up when I start losing hope, puts a smile on my face when I run out of reasons to stay positive, and reminds me of the immense warmth, affection, support and encouragement that I am getting from my family, friends and professors each and every day here at OSU.
“Though age may dim our memory’s store
we’ll think of happy days of yore,
True to friend and frank to foe,
as sturdy sons of Ohio”
As mentioned in Carmen Ohio, Buckeye spirit is something that will stay with you forever, till the end of eternity, no matter where you are. It will remind you of the best of the times and will become a reason for you to keep your head held high.