Part II - The Decision...

It is a wonderful thing when God gives peace about decisions. We all had so much anxiety regarding Zack's future college decision before leaving for our college preview trip. Like I mentioned in the first post, we anticipated Zack choosing Florida State after our visit there on Monday and our Tuesday visits were just going to be "formalities". I was trying to get accustomed to the idea that my baby was going to be 4 hours away. Even driving down to Orlando that evening, Gary made the comment that we would keep our Tuesday appointments at UCF and Full Sail, but he felt like we would just be going thru the motions, that the decision had already been made.

Tuesday morning was a rainy, cold, dreary day. I prayed that morning that the Lord would somehow allow Zack NOT to like either of the two colleges we were about to visit, cause you know, mama can't handle being 8 1/2 hours away from her only child!

UCF (University of Central Florida) was our first appointment. We met with one of the Admissions Directors and then proceeded to tour the campus, followed by a housing tour. As we walked from building to building, I became more and more impressed with the campus, the staff and just the atmosphere in general. I could see Zack there and I had peace about it...but no way was mama going to influence his decision! We decided to have lunch at the University Rec Center. As we were eating, we asked Zack what he thought and also mentioned that it would be a good idea to write down pros and cons for each college. And he replied, "this is it! This is where I want to go!" I had to swallow hard and told him that I was having the same feelings and had peace about him attending UCF. Gary felt the same and it was just neat to see how God was working through each of us individually to accomplish the same end result...peace.

We decided to keep our appointment at Full Sail so as not to leave room for any doubt or questions. None of us were impressed. I think our minds were already made up about UCF and we were not considering anything else. Zack's comment was, "I'm not weird enough to go here!" It's a media arts college (film making, film producing, music production, video game production, etc.) and there were alot of "artsy" people and it seemed most of them were chain smokers!

We went back to UCF for the Marching Knights rehearsal Tuesday evening. We were sitting on the sidelines watching, when one of the Director's assistant came down from the observation tower and said the Director was inviting us to come up to the tower to view rehearsal from there. Wow! We were so impressed! He was so kind to Zack---said he had heard that he was there on a college visit and had heard all about him from his assistant (whom we had met earlier in the day). There were several times throughout the rehearsal that he would talk with Zack and tell him to watch for this, or this is why we do it this way, etc.

By the end of the evening, it felt like home...to all of us. We have accepted the offer of admission from UCF and his spot is confirmed...get this........beginning Summer term. Yep! You read right! Zack will begin classes June 9th, just under 3 weeks from his high school graduation date. That's one mama's still trying to get used to! He's excited though! He's going to try to get Freshman English out of the way and he also says he'll be used to the campus and ahead of all the other freshman when they start in the fall. Plus, we think this will help him not be so stressed once band camp starts the end of July.

Here are more pictures of the campus...
These are some of the dorms...

This is a street with a bunch of little shops, etc. (If you've been to Atlantic Station in Atlanta, that's what it reminds me of...Florida style!)

Here's another picture of the shops with some dorms...

Zack in front of the reflecting pool

The Rec Center pool in the background...

The Welcome Center with the Pegasus UCF logo...

Zack watching the Marching Knights rehearsal...

This is a pic I found on the web of the Rec Center...this is only a small part of this very large facility! It has a two-story rock climbing wall in this area pictured, along with a huge cardio room with work-out equipment, basketball courts, indoor pool, outdoor pool, sand volleyball, etc. Hmmm...will he ever do any work?!
So that's the latest! Thank you for your prayers while we were on this trip and your kind words of encouragement. Please continue to keep Zack in your prayers as he begins this new chapter in his life.

Also, I've told Gary he needs to start looking for a job in Florida...somewhere within a reasonable driving distant to UCF...to which he replied, "I could always do my dream job! Driving the Monorail at Disney World!" Uh....yeah....how 'bout something that pays more than minimum wage?!

Zack's thoughts on the subject..."good grief mom! Are you going to follow me everywhere?"

Yep. That's the idea.

9 sweet friends had to say...:

Musicaljean said...

That's really cool! And I'm excited because surely sometime in the next 4 years we can both visit our kids in Florida at the same time and get together, right? Orlando and Tampa aren't that far apart.

Hey, what ever happened to the trip to your brother in PA at Thanksgiving?

Lynne said...

Congratulations to Zack for making a great decision. My sister lives in Orlando and attended UCF - I think her granddaughter is going there too. He's going to do great, Mom. Don't worry!

Dianne said...

That's pretty cool...thanks for letting us know!

justabeachkat said...

How exciting! I vote for you to move to Florida and I know exactly where I'd like for that to be!

Congrats to Zach!

Hugs!
Kat

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

What a wonderful day.
We raise our kids with strong roots and graceful wings. He will soar!
But you will always be HOME =D

Tonja said...

Tracey, I'm so glad to hear this news. I'm glad Zach has a confidence in his decision and that you and your hubby have a peace about it. When it is right, you know it. Isn't God wonderful? When we ask Him to be in the midst of our decisions and lead us to make the right one...He just works it all out and we have that peace that only He can give. I'm happy for you.

It will be hard...letting him go...but watching him grow into the man God has in mind will be so exciting and fulfilling. You'll do fine. And, he'll do great!

"B" Club is getting closer!

The Preacher's Wife said...

Congrats on a huge decision! That campus is beautiful....

Profbaugh said...

Okay, I know I'm a little late posting on this one, but I just could read it and NOT post. As I've said before, I'm a marching band nut. I'm actually a current alumni band board member at Illinois State University. Believe it or not, one of the reasons I chose ISU over some other more exclusive private schools was that the band director took time to talk to me. My mind was made up from that point on!!

So send my congrats to Zach. It sounds like he made an excellent choice.

~Cheryl

mcc said...

Hi Tracey,

Congratulations to Zack. He choose a fine school! I live in Winter Park (part of the Orlando area)and have 2 boys in college - one at FSU and the other a freshman in Gainesville at Santa Fe CC (hoping to be at UF soon).
I was suppose to meet with you all in Birmingham last week, but couldn't make it due to other commitments that weekend :( I hope to be there next time though and look forward to meeting you!

Melissa

 
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