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An Open Letter Farewell to Cairn University

By Cairn Graduate & Beloved Scroll Reporter, Rachel Krodel

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Dear Cairn,

First of all, thank you. Thank you so much. Thank you for the long nights of homework where I learned that procrastination really doesn’t pay off, the late nights with friends that proved time is irrelevant when you’re having fun, the chapels where I cried, the chapels where I laughed, and the classes that stretched me to my breaking point and back. Thank you for the good as much as the bad. Thank you for changing me, for transforming me with the Holy Spirit. You were God’s conduit to make me new. Thank you, teachers, for working long and hard hours to get my grades in on time and make sure I had constructive feedback that would build and mold me as a writer. Thank you, staff, for all the hard work you put in day after day that nobody actively notices. Thank you to everyone who was there for me when I was down, from friends to faculty and more. Thank you for changing my life.


Cairn University will always be a part of me. I spent four years of my life here; I’ll never be the same. Moving ahead is terrifying, thrilling, and deeply troubling all at the same time. I’m about to experience Post-Cairn Culture Shock. PCCS is caused by the graduating of a Cairn college student, resulting in their removal from campus and into a completely different area of life. Symptoms include confusion, sadness, constant texting, random snapchats, and trying to figure out where all the Christians went in your social circles. I’m about to step out of the Cairn bubble and into “the real world.” As I prepare for this giant leap, however, I find myself reminiscing on my time spent in this little Langhorne piece of heaven.

Picture Credit: Danielle Heron
Picture Credit: Danielle Heron

First of all, I never expected to change as much as I did. I seriously transformed from a caterpillar to a butterfly. I was a shy, anxiety-ridden, sin-struggling caterpillar that would rather keep her mouth shut than speak her opinion and cause trouble. These years at Cairn have turned me into a strong, confident, faithful woman who has accomplished great things in the name of Christ and is willing to stand up for her thoughts and opinions because gosh darn it she deserves to have them! Cairn did that to me. I am so proud of who I’ve become, and it took the bad times as much as the good. Also…I really learned to appreciate my teachers. They can frustrate us sometimes, but really, they’re human beings too. They have lives, families, and to do everything that they do, they really deserve our respect. I found that my best classes were with the teachers that I respected. Give them your respect and your best efforts, and they’ll do the same to you.

Picture Credit: Danielle Heron
Picture Credit: Danielle Heron

I also learned that there is a fine balance between making memories and getting good grades. In fact, this was something I really struggled with. I wanted to make people proud, my parents especially, and get good grades that they could be proud of. It took me a long time to realize that I was missing out on the prime experience of my life. It took some self-discipline; not only was homework keeping me antisocial, but the computer was too. I had to say no to that one video game; I had to say no to one more video on Youtube; I had to say no to Netflix. But those random times with my friends when I was pulled away from the computer and yanked out on some crazy adventure….those are the times I’ll remember. I won’t remember Season Two, Episode Three of Once Upon a Time six years from now. I’ll remember the midnight Wawa runs, the giddy laughter of four girls goofing around in our dorm, and the game of Sardines during the cast party. Those are the moments I’ll remember.


Cairn is my life. Moving forward is scary; there’s a big question mark on my future. But Cairn has really helped prepare me for what lies ahead, and God has used every single experience here to guide me on my future path. Every time I see a pile of rocks, I’ll smile. Every time I hear the word “path,” I’ll grin. Every time someone says “Cairn,” I’ll think of home. I may be moving on to the next steps of my life, but Cairn will always be where I belong.

Picture Credit: MaryJo Funez
Picture Credit: MaryJo Funez

And, Lord willing, years from now people will look at this school and say “this is where that famous novelist went to college!”


Dream big, Cairn. God’s by your side. You can do anything. Trust in Him, and never be afraid to walk a different path.

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