Why I became a life member of the GAA is the easiest question I’ve been asked in a long time! I joined for life for the convenience as well as to save money! When the opportunity arose to join the GAA for life at a new alumni discounted price, I knew it was a smart investment. But WHY was it a smart investment is the more interesting answer than my honest one of me being time-and-fiscally-minded.
As I’m sure everyone else in the GAA can state, to put it simply, I love Carolina. The past four years have been the best four years of my life! I grew and experienced so much during them. (Deep breath) I was in NROTC (and because of that earned my commissioning as an ensign in the US Navy), Carolina Fever (I went to 3/4 dook games during my time there AND witnessed the 2009 National Championship from Franklin St!), worked in Housing for 3 years as a RA and then Community Manager, made leaps and bounds in my faith and walk with God, double majored in history and peace, war, and defense (PWAD), made some of my best friends for life, and finally (and one of my personal highlights of my Carolina resume), met my now-fiance my Sophomore year at a friend’s party!
As I sit writing this from the middle of the Mediterranean Sea winding down my first eight month deployment aboard the USS LABOON (DDG-58), I feel pangs of homesickness and longing to be back at UNC where my fiance is finishing her one year MAT (lucky her, she got to stay for another year at UNC). I know that soon I’ll have to get HER a life membership as well into the GAA so that together we can still stay tapped into the Southern Part of Heaven. Being in the GAA already has and will continue to connect us with Tar Heel fans around the world wherever we move while I’m in the Navy, as well as provide us with news from what’s happening on campus and around Chapel Hill (the discount at Johnny T-Shirts helped too when I had to buy some UNC gear last time I was in town).
For everybody who went to UNC, there is a lasting connection to the University that people only want to get stronger with time. I keep my connection strong through the GAA, and becoming a life member was convenient, cheaper (esp. if I live for a long time), and the best decision I made right before I graduated. I love wearing my class ring and feeling my connection back to the greatest University in the world just by looking at the interlocked “NC.” The GAA also helps to strengthen and remind me of that connection with their mailings (both paper and email) and annual calendar!
In summation, I can think of no better way to still feel like I’m involved in campus life than by staying involved in the GAA (reading the DTH’s kvetches online helps too though), and that is why I joined for life. The decision to join for life was an investment back into my perpetual interest in Carolina, while at the same time eventually saving me money in the long run (and the convenience of having to rejoin every year). So thank you GAA for keeping me in tune with the happenings of UNC! In my mind I’m going to Carolina, and being a life member in the GAA only helps to take me back there.
Grant Morine ‘12 | Life Member 43,357 | Norfolk (serving aboard USS Laboon)