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Alicia DiPerri

My Clemson Experience

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It feels surreal that I am even writing a blog on my Clemson experience, because I most definitely just moved into my place freshman year 2 weeks ago. I can’t even believe how fast this time has gone. I remember being SO freaked the night before I moved into college my freshman year. Not to mention, I didn’t know any of my roommates and I was such a home body! I even remember the exact playlist I was listening to as I waited in the line of cars into my apartment complex. So uncertain of the future. Now here I am 4 years later and it’s crazy how much has happened. Most of what I would have never expected sitting in my car that day ready to pull into my new home.

The month after I moved to college, my sister had my baby nephew, Dawson! Just 3 months after that, my mom was diagnosed with 3 rare lung diseases. The next month, Clemson won a National Championship and I got to hang the flag in Death Valley at midnight with my friends! Then I met some of my favorite people in an FCA small group, and that completely changed my freshman year!

Sophomore year I moved to Durham NC for my mom to get her double lung transplant. I became a full time student all online. I met one of my absolute best friends ever in Durham, who’s engagement photos I just got to take!

Junior year I moved from Greenville to Pawleys Island, came back to Clemson, changed my major to Graphic Communications, and my photography business took off. To no surprise, Clemson won another National Championship and I heard fireworks go off all around town. I got my first internship at Tigertown Graphics and licensed my business!

Senior year I rescued my dog, Pinky, celebrated my moms 2 year lungaversary, moved to Atlanta for an internship with WestRock, then finished my schooling during a pandemic. In fact I actually gave my final presentation for a class in a hospital waiting room!

Which perfectly explains my time in college. I learned to persevere no matter the trials, find the friends that are there for you, prioritize what matters most, and learned that there is so much more to life than school. If someone had told me that day in line what these next 4 years would have looked like. I would’ve NEVER believed you! But I can honestly say that I am so much stronger than I was 4 years ago.

Some of the absolute best memories of my life were made during these 4 years. There have been belly laughs, tears, triumphs, A+’s, F-‘s, best friends, Tillman bells, hospital visits, Cooper Library snacks, 1 am jam sessions with friends, spontaneous drives, immense growth, love, heartbreak, football chants, and a LOT of orange! If I could go back and tell 18 year old me what I knew now, I would say : hold on tight. I mean SUPER tight. Because these next 4 years are going to change you in ways you never imagined. But keep your eyes open, because it’s a beautiful ride.

I love you always Clemson.

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I'M ALICIA CAITLYN

Wedding and lifestyle photographer, rescue dog mom, Disney lover, and a type 2 BFF. I'm glad you're here! Now let's get to know eachother!