Senior Reflects: My Favorite Memories at Rowan

a photo of julia sitting outside the Rec Center

Today’s story features Julia McAleavey, a senior from Monmouth County, NJ, graduating with a bachelor’s in advertising. Julia transferred to Rowan her sophomore year, from Eastern University in Pennsylvania. 

My time as a Rowan student is coming to a close. I will be finished with my degree as of the spring semester and it just doesn’t feel real. I am sad to leave, but I am so grateful for all of the friends memories I made along the way. 

I transferred into Rowan as a spring semester sophomore. I remember moving into my Rowan Boulevard apartment, pleasantly surprised that I had a kitchen and my own bedroom. The university I attended beforehand wasn’t a good fit, so I was nervous and excited to see what Rowan had to offer for me. 

Julia McAleavey- Senior advertising majorBefore attending Rowan, I had not declared a major. All I knew was that I wanted a career where I could be creative. I then found out that Rowan offered a major in advertising, and after some meetings and taking my Introduction to Advertising class, I knew it was the perfect fit for me. I have made so many memories in my advertising classes and met so many great students and professors.

I did not have a job at my old school and I knew I wanted one here to make some extra money. Being that I am a certified lifeguard and swim instructor, I walked over to the Student Recreation Center where we have our campus pools. I got an interview and excitedly accepted the job. Upon being hired, I knew that I would be in a better state financially, but what I didn’t know was how awesome everyone was on the aquatics staff. They made me feel welcome as a new transfer, and I consider many of them to be good friends today. 

Me and my rec center lifeguard coworkers
Me *far right third row from the bottom* and my lifeguard coworkers at the Rowan Rec Center

I think my all-time favorite memory from Rowan is being part of the club swim team. I swam competitively my whole life, but stopped at my old school. I figured joining the club at Rowan would help me to build

Me (right) with some club swim friends
Me (right) with some club swim friends at a meet.

friendships and stay active. It was so much fun having water polo practices and competing at meets, and of course the team meals after the meets. I even got to be a leader and build my professional development as the team secretary and social media chair. My favorite part of club swim, however, was the friendships I made that will last a lifetime. We get together regularly outside of practice and I still see friends that graduated almost every week. This is how I know that this bond we have is lifelong. Me getting ready to race backstroke.

In short, I could not have asked for a better experience at Rowan. I made some many great memories and friends, and also really grew and developed as an individual.

I’d like to thank all of my friends, advisors, and professors that made this journey so special. To all future and returning Profs: get involved and don’t be afraid to put yourself out there! You might change your life in the process. 

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Story by:
Julia McAleavey, senior advertising major