Elijah Saman - Graduation Address - June 10, 2020
My experience with Brandeis has taught me that I can be happy wherever I go. Before I moved here, I lived in Geneva, Switzerland which was amazing for me, but it also made it harder to move as my schooling was French. It was also extremely small with my grade only being seven people. So 26 might seem small here, but it was a big change for me. I did not feel comfortable when I first came here because I was not at the same level of English as the rest of my new classmates. This proved to be difficult because friendships, in sixth grade, were based around conversation whereas when I was a child they were based around playing games with each other. I am an awkward and shy person so it was especially challenging to build new relationships here.
Over time, I realized how friendly everyone was and how supportive the school was. Slowly, I began to find the different ways in which I liked living here. It started off with sports which really engaged me in the American ways. I started playing baseball and basketball. At the time I was very interested in baseball, but nowadays basketball is my main passion. Sometime later, I developed additional interests which included fashion and streetwear. I was curious about this, especially in seventh grade. I used to wash my parents' cars for money every two weeks. Combined with my allowance, I would buy clothing which I still have now. Once I had discovered different things that I liked here, I started becoming comfortable at Brandeis. When I look back I realize that Brandeis welcomed me in with open arms and really helped me to adapt to somewhere so different than anywhere else I had lived. Some of my fondest memories that I would not have had without Brandeis would be all the times that I was forced to stay up late with Sam and Liam on facetime. Every time, I knew that I would be tired at school the next day, but I also knew that they would be some of my happiest moments so I did it anyways.
I think that the lesson I learned from living here is that I am still an awkward and shy person who doesn’t like change, but I learned that if I am patient and find new friends and interests, I can be very happy wherever I go. As I transition to high school, I understand that I will have a period of time where I am uncomfortable and most likely unhappy, but I now realize that I will come out joyful on the other side. So thank you, Brandeis.