Syracuse University – A Journey Back

by Marla on April 3, 2011 · 69 comments

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Welcome to Syracuse University upstate NY.

Have you ever stepped back in time? Back to a place filled with lifes great memories. Memories of growth, fascination and limitless possibility? This week I traveled across the country back to a place I called home for 5 years of my life. Syracuse University not only educated me on the arts, sciences, writing, advertising and biology. College life goes way beyond the major you choose. It serves as lessons in being human. Creating life long bonds, community and pursuing passion.

Ladies luncheon at SU faculty center dining room.

I was invited back to SU by alumni relations and career services as part of the alumni speaker series. The mission of the program is for past students to come back to campus to share stories of work and life beyond college.

Syracuse University alumni dining room on campus.

I have never done more in a 24 hour period. Kim Brown the alumni services coordinator who I have been planning this with for months met me at the airport. We had dinner at my favorite dining spot in Armory Square called Pastabilities. I have never forgotten about their spicy hot tomato oil and was so excited to taste it again. It was wonderful.

Pastabilites restaurant in Syracuse New York

I mentioned to you guys I was gonna be on TV….First thing in the morning we dashed to Wegmans to get ingredients for the cooking demo I did on News Channel 9 Bridge Street morning show.

Marla Meridith on ABC Syracuse News channel 9

I had a great time working alongside Chris Brandolino. He made me feel very comfortable on set.

Marla Meridith and Chris Brandolino baking together on TV

Here is the segment if you would like to see it.

After taping, I spent time back on campus at my sorority Delta Gamma. These ladies are amazing! They are full of life, passion and great energy. We baked tons of my Lemon Ricotta Cookies for my evening presentation. I did not feel a day older than them. It truly felt like I had been there forever. Thanks so much for graciously welcoming me back.

Marla Meridith Alumni visit with Delta Gamma Sisters

The goal of my presentation was to share inspiration to students in all majors. The focus was to get people thinking outside the box. What one majors in at school might only subtly suggest what the future holds.

Syracuse University Alumni Speaker Series 2011

My path at Syracuse went from an undecided liberal arts major to the Newhouse School of Communications where I graduated with a degree in advertising. In my senior year I studied textile design and stayed a 5th year as an art student to pursue enough classes to have a job ready portfolio. After my kids were born food became my focus. Here I am today a recipe developer, food stylist and photographer. It is amazing where we end up when passion takes over.

Campus tour of Syracuse University in upstate NY

Stepping back into my old art studio brought tears to my eyes. Things were the same but a bit different. The biggest difference was the use of computers. Students now carry laptops instead of notebooks and pens.

Campus tour of Syracuse University

Everyone that I met with on campus was receptive, gracious and kind. The energy that I remember has not changed a bit. Campus is filled with students and faculty that love being there, despite the harsh snowy winters and continuous lake effect weather. The seniors I spoke with cringed at the thought of ever leaving.

Alumni visit to Syracuse University campus tour.

I am not sure where nearly two decades have gone. I have lived many places, gotten married and gave life to two beautiful children. Being on campus I felt like I was still 20 years old. Not a day had passed.

Pre school boy in navy blue Orangeman tee shirt

Well, maybe just a few days…….life is good.

Family Fresh Cooking kids in Syracuse University tee shirts.

To read more about this trip and my path at SU, please take a look at a wonderful article written in The Daily Orange campus newspaper.

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