By Andrew Hornick ‘12
“All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost.”
I remember being awed by those words delivered by Rabbi Joe Rooks Rapport on the morning of my graduation, May 20, 2012. Perhaps awe was easy to draw forth at that huge moment in our lives—and at the end of a long senior week—but I have been struck then and since by how well that simple sentence relates to the experience many of my peers and I have with Centre; an experience I am thankful for every day.
Each of us has a story of our own journey to Centre, whether we “wandered” along the way or otherwise. I have had this conversation on several occasions:
“So you’re from where?”
“Iowa City, Iowa”
“And where did you go to school?”
“Centre College, in central Kentucky.”
Insert confused silence.
I can understand that to people unfamiliar with Centre, it probably makes little sense that someone would go somewhere far away from home to a school that doesn’t (yet) have the glittery name recognition that usually draws students out of their home states. I can understand that maybe it seems like we wander there on a whim.
Yet the reason Rabbi Rooks Rapport’s statement felt so true that day in May 2012 is because it finally put into words what I had felt since my first visit to Centre’s campus as a high school senior: not all who wander are lost. All that is gold doesn’t have to glitter. Our school is quietly, unquestionably, outstanding.
I can’t emphasize enough the gift that is Centre’s untiring dedication to providing a college experience that gives their students the tools for success. They send students abroad at incredible rates, allowing them to learn about and understand our world. They put us through academic rigors that, despite our occasional grumbling, prepare us well for our chosen career or graduate education.
Maybe most importantly, the Centre education focuses on producing not only strong academic minds, but also well-rounded human beings: graduates who are as comfortable at a roundtable discussion of world affairs as they are donning work gloves and rolling up their sleeves to help their community.
This past summer, I had the opportunity to take a long road trip to visit my college friends. It was an amazing and, dare I say it, heartwarming experience to see how well many were doing: finding their way in careers they were passionate about, giving back to their communities, building on a strong foundation to make lives of leadership and service.
So perhaps Centre doesn’t yet have that glittery name recognition of a big school in some big city. But it doesn’t have to have a glittery name to be outstanding. How many schools can boast an exceptional glassblowing program alongside world-class study abroad programs, or professors who welcome students into their offices alongside hosting Vice Presidential debates? The list of Centre’s merits goes on and on. I am so thankful that my path led me to Centre. You are gold indeed, Centre Dear.
Andrew Hornick ’12 is a first year medical student at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. He graduated from Centre with a BA in Spanish. At Centre, he studied abroad twice—in Spain and Mexico—and was an RA and a member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon. Andrew lists his current hobbies as acquiring pickup basketball injuries, reading, and the cheering on the Iowa Hawkeyes.