The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Sophomore LHP Shane Sdao (38) reacts after a strikeout during Texas A&Ms game against Texas at Disch-Falk Field on Tuesday, March 5, 2024. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
A Sunday salvage
May 12, 2024
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The Northgate district right adjacent to the Texas A&M campus houses a street of bars and other restaurants.  
Programs look to combat drunk driving
Alexia Serrata, JOUR 203 contributor • May 10, 2024
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Junior Mary Stoiana reacts during Texas A&M’s match against Oklahoma at the NCAA Women’s Tennis Regional at Mitchell Tennis Center on Sunday, May 5, 2024. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
No. 13 A&M upsets No. 5 Virginia in dominant fashion 4-1
Roman Arteaga, Sports Writer • May 17, 2024

No. 13 Texas A&M women’s tennis met Virginia in the quarterfinal of the NCAA Tournament on Friday, May 17 at the Greenwood Tennis Center...

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Beekeeper Shelby Dittman scoops bees back into their hive during a visit on Friday, April 5, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
Bee-hind the scenes
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • May 1, 2024

The speakers turn on. Static clicks. And a voice reads “Your starting lineup for the Texas A&M Aggies is …” Spectators hear that...

Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
'I was terrified'
April 25, 2024
Scenes from 74
Scenes from '74
April 25, 2024
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Stubbornly successful

Life+%26amp%3B+Arts+reporter+and+photographer+Hannah+Shaffer+is+graduating+from+Texas+A%26amp%3BM+with+a+Bachelor%26%238217%3Bs+in+German+on+Friday%2C+May+13+at+4+p.m.
Photo Courtesy of Hannah Shaffer

Life & Arts reporter and photographer Hannah Shaffer is graduating from Texas A&M with a Bachelor’s in German on Friday, May 13 at 4 p.m.

I’d like to say my time at Texas A&M has always been enjoyable. In an ideal world, I would be graduating with a nuclear physics degree and an Air Force contract after spending my four years in the Aggie Band.
In reality, I am a German major, who has a rocky relationship with her recruiter, and I take pictures of the Corps of Cadets rather than being a member of it. How did we get here? Slowly, and not always surely.
I came to A&M not knowing a single thing about the school, the traditions or the Corps. Being a first-generation Aggie, I knew I was in for a big learning curve. I remember when Col. Samuell Hawes asked me if I knew what I was getting myself into as I signed the Corps paperwork two weeks before Freshman Orientation Week started. Confidently, I told him I had no clue, but that only made me more excited to get started.
That lasted all of about 3 ½ weeks. After some fun second-degree burns and a rapidly declining mental health, I decided the Corps was not for me. My freshman year ended with a 1.5 GPA and a letter from the College of Science politely telling me physics was not for me and I needed to switch majors.
After appealing my dismissal due to extenuating circumstances, an assault, a death of a loved one and more mental health issues, I continued to crash and burn as a physics major. I knew it was time to drop the stubborn act and shift my focus to something I knew I could be successful in. I love physics with all my heart, but the reality is, I am really, really bad at math.
Giving up on my dream of physics was one of the hardest decisions of my life. I have always wanted to work in the field of nuclear security after looking up to my father my entire life. Switching to German meant I would have to work a lot harder to make that wish a reality, but like I said, I’m stubborn. I’ll find a way to make it work.
Things started to look up after my switch in majors. I found a close group of friends within the German department who were there for both emotional and academic support. I began to go to football games and Midnight Yells, finding my own Aggie Spirit and falling in love with the school I had cursed years before.
Finding The Battalion made an incredible impact on my last year at A&M. Journalism was something I participated in all throughout high school, and being a part of a newspaper team again made me feel at home. Joining The Battalion as both a photographer and a writer, I was able to rediscover a passion of mine I’d forgotten about.
Freshman me would have laughed at the idea of walking the stage in less than a week. Though I may not be finishing on the same path I fought so hard to maintain, I will still be graduating with a degree from THE Texas A&M University. My relationship with college hasn’t always been the greatest, but with help from a great roommate, supportive friends and a hamster, I’ve learned to love where I’m headed and appreciate how hard I worked to get here.
Hannah Shaffer is a German senior and life & arts writer and photographer for The Battalion.

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