College Kids Miss Livingston Friends, Food
Holiday season means college students are coming home.
John Werner wakes up each morning precisely at 6:30 a.m., makes his bed and reports to mandatory breakfast at the dining hall. He is a second-year cadet at the United States Military Academy in West Point, N.Y.
For Werner and other college students returning to Livingston this month, winter break is a time to enjoy hometown life, family and friends again — albeit for a few weeks.
“It’s just nice to come home and be with my family and not have to worry about the rigors of my daily life,” Werner said.
He balances a busy schedule of academic work and military training at West Point.
“The only time I can really get away form the rigors of my school is when I’m in the weight room or of I’m out for a run,” Werner said. “It’s so great to just sit back and relax at home.”
Cadets at West Point must eat breakfast, lunch and some dinners at the mess hall. While at the Academy, Werner looks forward to coming home and eating at his favorite Livingston restaurants.
“Definitely the food is the best part of being home,” Werner said. “I love going to my favorite pizza place, Il Giacalone’s, and Irving’s Deli as well. I also really enjoy just going to Shop Rite and cook something at home, which I can’t really do at school.”
While other students at private and state colleges enjoy more freedoms than Werner does at West Point, they equally enjoy returning to the hospitality of home.
“Livingston is the place I call home,” said Lehigh University junior Bryan Lin. “It seems new every time I come back but I know it’s the same old town.”
Lin is studying mechanical engineering and music composition at Lehigh, located in Bethlehem, Pa. He said it is “very convenient” to meet up with high school friends because everyone lives in the same town.
“A lot of people from other high schools don’t have that luxury and they might have to drive further to see their friends,” Lin added. “It’s easy for us because we all live close.”
Similarly, Tara Heaslip, a sophomore at Emerson College in Boston, Mass., enjoys spending time with Livingston friends during vacations in between semesters.
“When I'm at Emerson, I miss being with my friends back home,” Heaslip said. “My friends from high school have a close bond after going through middle school and high school together and no matter who I meet in college, nothing will compare to those friendships.”