I’m Meaghan Wright. This is my StFX story.
When I reflect on my StFX experience, there are three things that stand out to me: passion, transformation, and the value of giving back.
StFX University helped me discover my passion, enabling me to transform the negative energy that surfaced after my mother’s passing. This university: the people; the surroundings; this special place taught me the value in what it means to have empathy, create change and strive for equality.
After graduating high school, my twin sister, Marie, and I backpacked in New Zealand for three months. Little did we know that our hobby of creating travel videos would develop into a passion and then into a full service video production company. The business program at StFX enabled this dream to become a reality, with its supportive professors guiding us through each step. To reiterate more clearly, at StFX they care about your success. Let’s just say I don’t believe that there is any other university in Canada where both the President and your soon-to-be favourite professor will personally greet you on your first day, reach out to you via text with advice, and be there to congratulate you on the day of graduation.
At the end my first year, I was offered a position with the StFX Video Team. Before I knew it, I found myself both behind and in front of the camera - interviewing past prime ministers like Brian Mulroney and celebrities such as Rick Mercer. I quickly began to understand that possibilities are endless at StFX. My passion for videography and marketing soon led me to co-founding my video production company, Mirror Image Media.
Inevitably, a smaller school creates a well-defined sense of community. I quickly flocked to some of the most hard-working, genuine, and caring people. I was surrounded by people who made me want to be better. With this camaraderie, I began to embrace the loss of my mother and tell my story and the story of my mom’s passing. It was at that moment when I looked up at hundreds of fellow students I realized coming to StFX was one of the greatest decisions I had ever made. The teary-eyed and familiar faces showed not only empathy, but communicated a sense of authenticity that I have yet to experience elsewhere.
Lastly, StFX taught me how to become more open minded and how to better society as a whole. At the end of my first year, my identical twin, womb-mate, and roommate, came ‘out’ to me. At that point in my life I had yet to encounter anyone close to me who was part of the LGBTQ community. I was undoubtedly homophobic, yet it was the StFX community that encouraged me to become more empathetic. I matured into a more unbiased human and in my third year, I helped bring the Get REAL movement to Atlantic Canada with the goal of unlearning homophobic language.
I try to imagine the feelings and competing emotions that I had when choosing what university to attend. I cannot imagine spending the last four years of my life at any other institution, simply because it has made me the person I am today. The bittersweet feeling of looking in the rear view mirror as I pulled out of Antigonish after graduation surfaces thoughts of happy memories, friendships, achievements, failures, and to some degree, a feeling of envy.
I envy the next group of students that will walk into this school as you begin this next chapter. I envy you for how quickly you will fall in love with the beautiful campus and the courses you will take. It’s not just a cliché. You will have small classes and you will have professors who truly care about you. I envy the involvement you will partake in societies, clubs and case competitions. I envy the drives you will take out to the numerous beaches, only a few kilometers away. I envy the smile on your face when your house wins its first hockey house cup. I envy the memories you will make living in a house of your best friends. Heck, I even envy the messy kitchens that you will have to clean up. I envy you for being at the forefront of the next best four years of your life.
As StFX President Dr. Kent MacDonald stated during the X-Ring ceremony, “StFX is more than just a University. It’s a place of purpose, where people learn and earn the skills, knowledge and attributes that they need to make the world a better place.”
Here is the thing. For those who shy away from being involved, fear not. StFX will transform you into a person who craves opportunities. You will become immersed into a culture of balance, both with school and play. The reason is simple. This is a place of purpose, where resources and support are endless and encouragement is the norm. It is rare, especially in comparison to larger universities.
At StFX, you will find purpose in your academic achievements, in the mix of work and play, but more importantly, you will find purpose in yourself.
The StFX community spirit is legendary and our family bond is like no other.