On My Own

On My Own

Alyssa Cino is a graduate student in the master’s of education in school counseling program.

Driving down the road to Niagara University in the fall of 2018, I was filled with mixed emotions. This was the first time I would be entering a school without my identical twin sister. I had spent nearly 20 years of my life attending the same grade school, high school, and even undergraduate institution as her. Multiple car rides and first days were experienced alongside my best friend. As I entered the Niagara University campus on my own, overcome with feelings of unfamiliarity and discomfort, I wondered what this journey would have in store for me.

Flash forward to today, I am currently finishing up my second semester of the school counseling program. With each class and experience I encounter, I am reassured that this was the right decision for me. Niagara University has given me a level of comfort that has surpassed my initial feelings of doubt. In addition, my program has helped me emerge into my own individual, allowing me to recognize my personal strengths and independence. During my second semester, I was awarded the Dean’s Scholarship, which provided me the opportunity to work in the College of Education. I could not thank NU enough for their continual support and guidance.

Niagara’s quaint campus offers multiple services that contribute to its supportive and encouraging environment. The small classroom sizes allow personal relationships to develop between both students and professors. What’s more is that instead of getting confused as my sister, I get recognized here for who I am. I look forward to completing my program and becoming a future school counselor. I pledge to nurture, inspire, and empower my future students in the same way that Niagara University has supported me.