Fall welcome week is an exciting time at Bluffton where new students arrive and start to find their niche on campus but not before saying goodbye to the friends and family who took the time to make sure their kit was ready for the next chapter of his or her life.
However, not all freshmen say goodbye – some will commute from home. Sydney Staton is one of those students.
Sydney is a graduate of Bluffton High School and is a mathematics major. She is also the daughter of one of campus’s employees, Rae Staton.
Rae is the campus counselor at Bluffton, and she encouraged Sydney to attend Bluffton for the multitude of options she would have.
But, being the daughter of a campus employee isn’t easy, especially when commuting from home.
She considered living on campus but decided for now she’s content traveling from home. Her age is also a major factor in this decision.
“I’m only 17,” said Sydney. “So, having her follow me around to sign all my paperwork isn’t something I really wanted to do.”
However, she has thoughts of living on campus in the future.
“I might live on campus just to practice being on my own,” said Sydney. “Sharing the locker room is enough; I wouldn’t want to share a room or a bathroom right now.”
Her commute isn’t anything to complain about, though, and neither is having her own room.
“We only live three minutes away, so I don’t have to drive very far,” said Sydney. “Plus, I don’t have to share a room with someone I don’t know.”
Sydney is a member of the women’s soccer team, so she plans on spending a lot of her time on campus.
“I’m a soccer player, so I’ll be on campus a lot, and I have been on campus a lot so far this year already,” said Sydney. “I plan on eating a lot of my meals here, too.”
Having a parent on campus also provides unique opportunities for the mother-daughter duo.
“I’m excited to have her on campus, but it’s going to be strange,” said Rae. “People have already come up to me and said, ‘Hey, I met your daughter!'”
While Sydney was in high school her mother’s life was fairly separate from hers.
“It’s going to be different,” says Rae. “Our lives have been pretty separate during the day the last 13 years.”
Being a part of a team has also been helpful for their relationship, giving Sydney time and space to grow on her own.
“She’s making her own friends,” says Rae. “She’s got her own group of people.”
Sydney, a midfielder, has great hopes for this year’s soccer season. Although the team, like many, have had struggles in the past, she is excited and ready to continue growth in the program.
“We’re looking solid,” said Sydney. “If anything, we’re just getting better.”
Being a math major provides Sydney with problem solving skills she will use in the future.
“I’ve always been a numbers person,” said Sydney. “I’ve always liked puzzles and math.”
Bluffton has a growing population of math majors. To her mother Rae, this major seems right up Sydney’s alley.
“She thinks it’s fun to do a three-page math problem,” says Rae. “I’m kind of the opposite.”
Not only is Staton a math major, soccer player and a commuter, but she is also an older sister; she has one younger brother with whom she is very close.
“It would be really hard for him if she were to leave,” said Rae.
If students have questions about commuting or other living arrangements they should contact Kevin Williams.