SAU Buzz

Ambrosians head to Utah for an APEX experience

by Lindsey Simon
Posted on Mar 31, 2016

I know we all wish we were on a beach somewhere sipping a pina colada, but it’s back to the school grind. I’ve decided to take this column to share my life changing experience I had in Beaver, Utah, with you.

The week before Spring Break is filled with anxiety, stress and the sheer excitement of knowing in one week you’ll be finished with exams and relaxing on a beach. But for me, this was not the case.

I was graciously invited to attend the first ever Apex Experience, hosted by the company Love Your Melon. Only 160 people were selected to attend this event and three were from St. Ambrose. Meredith Bailey, a sophomore nursing student, and I embarked on this adventure together. We knew nothing going into this. They said pack four outfits, bring skiing attire and a formal outfit and that was it. These 5 days were a mystery.

Over the course of the five days I had cell service for a good ten minutes. At first I was not happy because all I wanted to do was Instagram a picture or brag that Big and Rich put on a private concert for us. But these moments of no cell service gave me the opportunity to connect with complete strangers. I was fully able to live outside the screen.

During the Big and Rich concert the 160 of us locked arms, a group of people who have known each other for 48 hours. But what I realize now is if we would have had service, everyone’s hands would have been occupied with their phones and that moment would have never happened. There is so much more to life than notifications.

Wednesday came around, and this day was action packed with speakers. Ranging from cancer survivors, to the founders of LYM, to companies that also help children battling cancer. I will carry the words these people spoke with me for the rest of my life.

Robyn Rosenberger, the founder of Tiny Superheros, left us all with the best advice of all, that one moment in your life can ultimately change your story. That your story does matter and it’s all up to you to make that happen. Yes, to some it may seem cliche, but every decision you make in your life is helping you write your ‘story,’ not how many likes your profile picture just got or who retweeted your tweet. It’s time we all decide what we want our story to say and start to write it the way it needs to be written.

While the speakers opened up my eyes to the bigger picture of life, being in the absolute breathtaking mountains of Beaver did as well. All 160 of us were invited to ski or snowboard on the mountains. They told us a fresh batch of snow just covered Beaver and all the tracks we saw on the mountains were from us. We really did leave our marks there but it retrospect Apex left it’s mark on us all. Coming into this, I would consider myself timid when it comes to meeting new people, but leaving Beaver I left with 158 new best friends from all across the state. We didn’t care where you lived, what you looked liked or what bands you listened to, we all shared a common bond. By joining Love Your Melon we each made the decision to do whatever we possibly could to help try and end childhood cancer. And by putting these creative minds together with no cell service I believe we are one step closer to ending this ugly disease. I am beyond grateful to be given the opportunity to have attended the Apex experience, it opened my eyes not only to the beautiful places in the world but the people who live in it as well. I will never forget about my experiences that I had in Beaver and miss it and the people every day.

I am going to leave you with a little advice one of the cowboys told me as we were riding horses through the mountains. Read it carefully and apply the words into your life.

“Make worthy of the space you take up.”

As we finish these next few months of our college days Bees, start to write your story and make worthy of the space you take up.