Bettendorf graduates now college students

The bell rings as dozens of doors open and halls are filled with crowds of fresh faced students carrying bright colored notebooks and folders, searching for their next class. The new school year has begun and it has been quite a transition for thousands of teens across the country who are beginning the next chapter of their lives, college.

Bettendorf High School’s class of 2016 recently graduated in May, and many of these students moved on to a community college or university to continue their education. Some class members decided to find jobs after receiving their diplomas while others joined branches of the military. For a student accustomed to living in the Quad City area and attending a local high school of about 1,400 students, moving to a big university away from home can be a scary experience.

Former Bulldog Rachel Gist is now attending Taylor University in Indiana. According to Gist, she is very happy that she was able to go to Taylor University and is excited for the rest of the school year.

“Taylor University is very focused on community, so I have already had the opportunity to meet a ton of awesome people. It is really important to choose a college that you love and put yourself out there. Make new friends because there are so many incredible people to meet,” Gist said.

For other students, including a freshman at Southwest Minnesota State University, Emily Jasper, college has not been such an easy start.

“It’s already three weeks into the term, and my only friend is someone I knew from Bettendorf High School and also my roommate. The food is terrible, and I miss my friends back home. I will probably end up transferring because this is not the right school for me,” Jasper said.