STORY BY ELLEN KOESTER
Most Drake students are not originally from Des Moines. Some are from small towns, some from big cities and some are not even from the Midwest. Every student comes into the city with different expectations and different levels of familiarity with the new landscape. While some come in with a lot of knowledge about how to get around in Des Moines and which places are worth a visit, some come without any such knowledge.
Bailey Mosley came to Drake without knowing much about the city she moved into. She originates from Texas, in the not-so-small city of Dallas. Besides the differences in climate and population, Mosley said she has noticed some other big differences between Des Moines and her hometown.
“There’s not a lot of things to do here,” said Mosley. “I expected Des Moines to be like Dallas for some reason. In Dallas, there are all these things to do and there’s nothing to do here. I’m always bored and everything’s far away here. In Dallas, one can walk to about anywhere.”
Westhenry Ioerger came to Des Moines with a completely different background than Mosley, yet both have similar feelings about the differences between their hometowns and the new city.
“I live in a ranch in the middle of nowhere, but White Sulphur Springs is the closest,” said Ioerger. “Everything is different here. My town’s size is only 900 people while Des Moines is huge. The tallest building in our state is seven stories. I thought Des Moines was ‘bright lights, big city.’”
While moving to a big city may not be a smooth transition for some, Ioerger seems to be adjusting well.
“I expected to be overwhelmed a bit,” said Ioerger. “I was at first, but it has turned out to be a pretty friendly city. I expected it to be less accommodating than I found. Coming to a big city in general, I didn’t know what to expect because I’m so unfamiliar with the environment.”
Neither Mosley nor Ioerger knew much about Des Moines before attending Drake. Even as the first-years finish their first few months in the city, they said they are still pretty unfamiliar with their surroundings.
“I sort of know a lot about Des Moines,” said Ioerger. “I didn’t know anything about it coming in, and I feel like I can get around with my GPS. I learn more about it everyday. Maybe. Personally, I’d like to know as much as I can about the city. It’s interesting to know about the area where I am.”
In general, when one first moves to a new city, it feels unfamiliar and strange, especially if it is a completely different environment than one’s hometown.
“Des Moines doesn’t feel like home but that’s because I haven’t taken the time to make it home,” said Mosley. “I probably won’t stick around after graduation, but I’m going to medical school, so there’s no telling where I’ll end up.”
Although Mosley does not have plans to stay in Des Moines, she still said she thinks it is important to get to know the city.
“It is important because I’m spending the next four years here, so I should know about the city,” said Mosley.
Every Drake student will learn more about the city as they spend more time within city limits.