- I was born March 3, 1987 in Melbourne, Fla.
- My full name is Sara Rebekah Hudder, but I've always gone by my middle name.
- I have a younger brother, and older step-brother and -sister.
- I grew up in Palm Bay, and went to Port Malabar Elem, Stone Jr. High and Palm Bay High.
- I am a student at the University of Florida, and I am majoring in public relations with minors in business and leadership.
The Younger Years
Growing up I was always a happy kid. My parents divorced when I was 7, but I never let it get to me. I tended to keep my feelings locked up inside, and I think that hurt my relationships with my parents, and step-mom and -sister. I always felt like I had to keep up an image of the happy-go-lucky kid, who could do all. I think I still feel that way sometimes when it comes to school and work.
I never played sports when I was younger, but I took piano lessons for a few years and was very involved in my church. My dad was a minister, and even after he moved to a different city my family stayed very involved in church activities. I sang in the youth choir, went to Sunday school, helped in the church nursery and played a role in every church play.
In school I was always a star student. I tried my hardest in classes and excelled in the work I did. My parents were always very proud of me and came to expect those perfect straight 'A' report cards. My favorite school subjects were writing and geography. I wrote a short story in 6th grade and won a state award for it. I was also a member of Super Stars, a math program, Safety Patrols, the TV productions team and Community Educator's for students. Looking back now I guess I should have known I would always over-involve myself in extracurricular activities.
High School Times
I had a good time in high school, but I'm not one of those people who wishes they could go back and experience it again and again. I couldn't wait to get out of high school when I was there, and I haven't missed it yet. It's not that I had bad experiences in high school. I had a lot of friends, was a member of a lot of clubs and did well in all my classes. I just felt like I was always ready to do something more, and at that time the more was college.
In high school I became very interested in law. I joined Model Student Senate my freshman year and my sophomore year I became a member of Mock Trial. In both programs I learned a lot about law and government and decided I wanted to be a lawyer and then a judge after school. My Mock Trial team won first place at county level all three years I was there, and we won 5th place at state my second year.
Some of the other clubs I was a part of included Best Buddies, National Honor Society, Swim Team and Spanish Club. Spanish was by far my favorite subject, but mostly because of my teacher. Senora Laws is still one of the best teachers I have had in all my school career. She is very passionate about what she teaches, and we not only learned the Spanish language but also about Spanish culture. We always thought it was ridiculous to be learning Mexican states, or Middle Eastern countries, but she always had a good reason behind her madness and that was education. She wanted her students to be educated in all aspects, not only the grammar and pronunciation of the language. Another reason I enjoyed the class and club so much is because we always had cultural fiestas where we would dance, eat Spanish food and listen to stories about Spanish culture.
The Next Big Step
I didn't decide I wanted to come to UF until the summer before my senior year, and once I decided that was it. I only applied to UF, hoping I would get in and decided FSU would be my back-up if I needed it. Luckily I didn't, because I can't imagine living and going to school anywhere but Gainesville. I didn't know what to expect from UF. I knew I could handle the work, I knew it wouldn't be easy, but I didn't know I would love it so much. People always say not to rush through college, because no matter how much you hate all the schoolwork, you'll miss it when it's over. The closer I get to graduation each month, the more I'm beginning to agree with those people. True, I do want to get out and start working, and I'm tired of being tested on material I learn in class, but I can't imagine not going to class anymore.
I said earlier that I decided in high school that I wanted to work in law when I got out of school, but since then I've changed directions; a little bit at least. I declared my major from the beginning as public relations, and since then I have added two minors, business and leadership. I have been happy with my choice in PR and have not had any doubts yet. I joined the professional organization PRSSA and started an internship with the student-run firm Alpha PRoductions. I really enjoy working with Alpha and feel it has a lot to offer in teaching the usage of what I learn in the classroom.
I am still over working myself between classes, clubs, internships and work. I supervise at the catering company on campus and enjoy it, but it does wear me out. Although I am happy I have had to learn how to work for what I want, sometimes I wish I could have it easy like some of my friends and schoolmates. I also intern at The Alligator. I am just training now so it is unpaid, but I will continue to work there over the summer and start getting paid.
I have met a lot of people through classes and work at UF. I have become close friends with only a handful, but they are the type of friends you'll always keep, which I think is more important than knowing a ton of people but not being close to any of them. I am looking forward to the next year. I'm studying abroad in Italy the second half of summer, and I will be a senior in the fall. I'm going to try to take it easy my senior year and enjoy it more.