Ben Kajevic is a current sophomore at Auburn University, traveling all the way from Chicago to attend what he calls "the best engineering school that still plays football well."
Being an out-of-state student was rather difficult at first, Kajevic admitted, considering the difference in dress, accents and just all around approach to life. Although he lived in Alabama for a little while as a child, Kajevic grew up and was formed into himself in the northern states. "Once you get used to," Kajevic said, referring to living in the South, "you appreciate it all way more and you never want to leave."
In fact, Kajevic admitted to getting homesick while in Chicago over the summer, missing his new home here at Auburn.
Coming to Auburn University was not a very big decision for Kajevic. In fact, when you ask most freshman why they decided to come to school at Auburn University, they have some special story or moment.
Not the case for Kajevic.
"I have literally no idea - I heard about it from a friend and decided to apply." He said he visited once, and after finding out he didn't get into another school he wanted, he ended up here.
"Seeing how much I fit in, even being from the north, and being chosen as a Camp War Eagle counselor made me realize I had made the right choice." Kajevic said it felt nice to know he was representing Auburn well.
Camp War Eagle is the freshman orientation program here at Auburn University, an exclusive group of orientation leaders. Kajevic said he decided to go out for the organization because of "the bond I have with my CWE counselor; I'd love to have that with incoming freshmen."
Being a freshman is a scary experience for even the bravest and most-outgoing of the new class each year. In fact, many freshman say that orientation overwhelmed them and made them more fearful of starting the year off wrong.
Kajevic says, however, that freshman year is arguably the most important year. "You make freshman mistakes, but we all do," Kajevic said. "It's the year where you really find yourself and find out what you really like to do."
Kajevic said that making a routine of things and above all, going to class, helped him survive freshman year. He also joined a fraternity, where he had people to rely on and help him along the way.
"I wish I could go back and tell myself that the little things should be something not to stress over - that it'll all be okay in the end," Kajevic said, smiling thinking back over his freshman year memories. "Take it day by day."
If he could give all the new incoming freshman any advice, Kajevic said it would be this: "Unless it's life or death, it doesn't matter that much. Don't worry about things that have little impact on your life. One bad semester, or grade or whatever doesn't change your semester or determine who you are."