The end of the road

So I graduate in just a couple of weeks. I would be lying through my teeth if I told you I am not at least a little (okay, very) bummed out about this. My time at UM has undoubtedly been the best four years of my life.

Every now and then, a prospective ‘Cane asks me about UM and whether he should come here. My answer always starts off the same: I have never regretted my decision to come to the University of Miami. Ever. There are plenty of things that irk me about my alma mater, such as the lack of a consistent faculty and course offerings within the Political Science department, disorganized academic advisors in the Comm. School, and a dispassionate student sports fan base. But there is much more that I love about UM. Lake Osceola and the crocs, the Rat, the Orange Bowl, being a (multiple) hurricane survivor, having the best university president in the country, and a couple of teachers whose classes I never want to miss (Professors Giroux, Turner, and Smith) all make it laughable to think that I would have been better off anywhere else.

My first Hurricane column was published in February of 2004, and it was about the truly troubling demise of Howard Dean’s bid for the Democratic Presidential nomination. Thankfully, that election ended years ago, and I have probably been a more tolerable person because of it. Sure, we have a schmuck of a president whose true ambition in governance seems to be the rapid erosion of human rights, at home and abroad. But at least without a national campaign going on, I don’t have every Tom, Dick, and Sally telling me how great Reagan was and how Democrats are nothing but a bunch of cheese-eating surrender monkeys. UM students are often criticized for their political apathy. I can honestly say that I prefer apathy to ignorant condemnations of the people who actually want to make this country better.

My point is, this is my 31st column for the Miami Hurricane, and I have loved the opportunity to be one of just a few people who get to comment on life as a Cane in the official UM publication. It’s too bad that I’ll miss next year; primary season is always fun, and you might have heard that our beloved president is tight with one of the Democratic front runners. UM is once again on the list to host a Presidential Debate in 2008. Who knows, maybe I might get the chance to write a guest alumni column when that time comes. Either way, it’s been a damn good time at the University of Miami. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. But as the French say, c’est la vie. New Orleans calls..

Patrick Gibbons is a senior majoring in political science. He will be attending Tulane Law School in the fall. Comments, complaints, and Mardi Gras housing requests may be sent to