My name is Adara Patel, and I just finished the last final of my undergraduate career from my home in Spring, TX! In about a week, I will be graduating with degrees in Biology and Business Management with a Pre-Health specialization.
While I have loved my time with the Wesley House, my story differs from a lot of the other seniors. I grew up in a Catholic household and was very involved with my faith throughout high school. However, when I came to SMU, I kind of took a step back from religion. I was so busy trying to make friends in a new city, establish a routine, and handle the rigor of Patty’s intro chemistry class, that I didn’t feel like I had time to worry about keeping up my faith.
As time went on, I settled into life at SMU, and I started to feel like I wanted a community to help me reconnect with my faith. A good friend of mine, Ryan Mendez, often brought up the Wesley House during our weekly Umph lunches (a tradition we have kept throughout our four years). He talked about his bible study and the community he had formed in just a few short weeks. It all sounded great to me, but I was unsure if I would be welcomed. I wasn’t raised Methodist, I hadn’t picked up a bible in years and I had already missed so much, I felt like I would be behind. So politely, I turned down Ryan’s invitations to join him at the Well, or bible study, or crepe night. In fact, I turned down Ryan’s invitations for three years!
However, he never stopped asking, and finally at the end of my junior year fall semester, I agreed to join Ryan for crepe night! Now, as a part of the Wesley community, I realize how ridiculous it was for me to afraid. Since I have been here, I was been welcomed with open arms. I never felt behind or left out, and I have had the chance to make so many great friends that I could call on for anything! Spiritually, attending the Wesley Bible study has helped me to see scripture in a different light. Since starting at Wesley, I have found myself picking up my Bible more often and actively seeking to learn and grow in my relationship with God!
Graduation, especially right now, comes with a lot of uncertainty. The one thing I do know though is that I will be working towards my dream career as a Physician Assistant. That might be as a clinical research technician at Baylor Scott & White Hospital, but it could also be at a PA program out in Abilene! I guess we’ll just have to wait until August to see! Either way, I am looking forward to this next phase of my life, and I put my faith in God that things will work out as they are supposed to.
Now for my “How to Wesley”, I think the best advice I can give is to not let your fear and uncertainty stop you from being involved with the things you care about. For those of you who have already found a great home in Wesley, continue to dive in and participate in all this wonderful organization has to offer. However, I also challenge you to share this community with others. Show the SMU community that the Wesley House is a place that welcomes everyone, even in their junior year. Be as dedicated and brave as Ryan! I am so thankful that he never gave up on me, because if he had I would have missed out on all the loving relationships I have gained here! Thank you to my fellow seniors for these past three semesters and thank you to Sarah and Andrew for creating such a great escape from hectic parts of life. Keep in touch!