Academic Banquet Misadventure

One thing that I will never forget happened in college during my sophomore year at Pace University. I was one of about 30 students honored with a banquet for academic achievement. This awards banquet was attended by the University President, trustees, students and faculty.

I felt fine until the end of the meal. I suddenly began to feel extremely nauseous and lightheaded. While one of the trustees was giving a speech, I dashed to the ladies’ room. I proceeded to vomit in the restroom for about ten minutes. While I was sick, I was worried that I would miss my opportunity to receive my award handed to me by the President. I knew the awards were going to get disbursed soon.

Somehow, word had gotten out in the main room that one of the award recipients was ill. I was still hovering over the toilet when the President of the University herself came into the stall and asked me what was wrong. I had told her what happened and she tentatively asked, “Are we expecting?”. I responded that I probably had a stomach flu.

By now, I was the center of unwanted attention as a crowd of female faculty and students congregated outside my stall. I was still reeling from the shock that the President had heard one of the award recipients was sick, and delayed the ceremony to come in and check on me.

For the duration of the night, many attendees of the banquet asked how I was feeling. I felt flattered by the concern and a little embarrassed being the ‘sick girl’ at this event. I managed to make it through the rest of the night and receive my award.

I have had many wonderful experiences as a college student. This one experience sticks out for me because it proves the camaraderie in my university.  I had so many of my fellow Setters check up on me that night. That is why, along with the outstanding education I received, is the reason why I love my alma mater.


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