Reflections on Barsema Hall

So here I am, sitting in the atrium enjoying a midday hotdog and I can’t help but feel like I’m a part of something much bigger than myself.  The atrium feels energetic and full of life.  It is the proverbial heartbeat of the college and it is such an interesting and diverse place to be in.  Not only is it a place where students take a moment to relax and socialize with their peers but it doubles as a study area where they can complete assignments and other tasks.  This work and play atmosphere provides an interesting dynamic to the feel of the space.

As I finish my hotdog, I step outside where I overlook Dad’s Pond from the terrace.  This is my place to reflect.  In between classes you will often find me here pondering my next move.  It’s as though I’m playing a game of chess with life and my responsibilities are the pieces.  The benches along the walkway provide me with a moment of clarity and the breeze that passes by comes with almost a rhythmic frequency (*contented sigh*).  Just before I get too relaxed, I head back inside to move to my next task. 

The thing I enjoy most when I step back inside is the fact that I really feel like a young professional when I enter Barsema Hall.  I am surrounded by the future which is kept in the hearts and minds of my peers and in the walls of the institution.  The future is born from our motivation and our dreams and I get the opportunity everyday to see other students working hard to live out their own!

For the amount of time that I spend in this building I could almost call it home (I’d rather not call it that because then they’d start charging me rent).  The faculty make me feel at home and not a day goes by where I don’t speak with my professors outside of class.  A majority of the time, the conversations never have anything to do with classes or related projects.  Students will walk by and say hi and it all feels like I have an extended family here.  These people have grown with me professionally and worked beside me for the past year.  Going through that process really seems to strengthen the ties between students here at the College of Business.

When I was younger I thought that I’d just become another number in College…how much further could I have been from the truth.

These thoughts I catalogued above came to me courtesy of a few minutes between class and a hot dog.  Imagine that.  Anyways, thanks so much to Dennis and Stacey Barsema for providing this amazing building and thank you to the faculty and students that breathe life into the NIU College of Business.  Give yourselves a pat on the back.  Together, we’ve made a population of students into a community of students! 2.0out

2 comments on “Reflections on Barsema Hall

  1. Dennis Barsema on said:

    Nick, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts about Barsema Hall. Stacey and I are always humbled by the generous thoughts and words of the students when relating their experiences in Barsema Hall. We are glad that so many of you consider this to be your “home”. I was especially warmed when I saw you mention “Dads Pond”. My dad, Harold Barsema, passed away in 1999, several years before we made the donation to build Barsema. Dad always loved water, and in his final years, lived with my Mom on a lake in Minnesota. I couldn’t think of a better way to memorialize a great man by naming a lake (OK…a pond!) after him that is enjoyed by so many students. He always found water to be very relaxing and peaceful, and I’m glad to hear that Dads Pond brings many of you peace, too. Track me down when you see me in Barsema (I’m there every Tuesday and Thursday teaching), and I’ll be happy to buy you that hotdog (or something a bit more healthy)! Best, Dennis

    • Nick Kochetta on said:

      Mr. Barsema, Thank you for reading my post and for the kind words. I strive to maintain authenticity and honesty in my posts so please rest assured knowing that my sentiments towards Barsema Hall are real and that they are shared by my peers as well! Perhaps I will see you soon and cash in that offer on the hot dog (or a salad…I think the freshman fifteen caught me a little late!). Thanks again for your support and I send my best to you and your family. Nick

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