Iola, Thanks for the Memories


Imani Lemon, Cristal Macias, Lindsey Temaat, and Kussatz, who became best friends early in their freshman year, smile on their graduation day last weekend.

Nikayla Kussatz, Photo Editor

Two years ago, after I had applied to Allen Community College, I never would have expected to be surrounded by the best people I have ever met, especially in a town this small.

Last year I made the decision of taking almost all of my science classes in just two semesters, which really made me question my sanity. I made it out alive so I guess that’s a plus.

Kussatz, Bailey Spague, Lindsey Temaat, and Adriana Nunez pose for a pic at a Pittsburg State University Football game in September of 2018.

To Todd Francis: Your class showed me the difference between high school and college. I literally spent hours working on all the quizzes, take home tests, and labs just to do mediocre in your gruesome 8 a.m. class. Thank you for teaching me that I need to stop being stupid and actually study.

Amy Pietan: Your class showed me that after endless notes, psychology was still the most interesting class and I loved how well you taught everything. Thank you for teaching me that some people are just annoying because of their psychology. Also, you and your group keep grinding in the gym; half of Iola and I and are already terrified of all of you.

Terri Piazza: Your bubbly energy was truly the only reason that I would force myself to get up for public speaking. You understood my sarcasm! Thank you for giving me a much better grade than I deserved on my persuasive speech about why dinosaurs never existed.

Travis Robb: After having the majority of my classes taught by you, I can safely say I now know how to successfully color code my notes and still have no idea what I was doing in your class. You made every single class interesting and answered every 9,000 questions I asked throughout these two years. Thank you for helping me spell all of the impossible organisms and teaching me that paying attention in class actually helps.

My mom wasn’t lying when she said that college would be the best years of my life.

Katie Mitchell: Before taking your anthropology class, I thought I would skip it every single day. I have never been interested in history classes or anything along those lines. Your class literally changed my perspective on the word and I am proud to say that I never skipped your class! Thank you for teaching your subjects so well and making the hardest concepts so understandable and enjoyable.

Kussatz posed with her boyfriend and Allen alum Jacob Patterson at his graduation in May 2018.

Betty Herring: Your classes were very interesting, to say the least. Every single day I counted on you to tell the class a new story that was completely unrelated to class, but still relevant in a way. Thank you for ingraining what the vastus lateralis and vastus medialis are into my brain.

Tera Schultz: Thank you for acknowledging my tapeworm and letting me eat your disgusting chicken alfredo for lunch. I loved your class every day because you would either yell at me or someone else for being a complete moron. There are so many different buttons on a camera and you taught me and every other student what those buttons meant. Thank you for all of the doughnuts and every time you made me giggle throughout this semester.

Nikki Peters: You are an amazing human being, and that is all I really have to say. You do so much for the school, community and for your family and I have no idea how you manage everything. Thank you for helping me with applying to nursing schools when all I wanted to do was cry the entire time.

Ryan Bilderback: I am sorry for always being so annoying and bothering you all the time. Everything you do for the school does not go unnoticed, and this place would most likely be an insane asylum if it were not for you. Thank you for keeping everyone in line and making this college a great environment.

Bruce Symes: I have no idea where to begin honestly. I joined newspaper because I wanted to be more involved and make more friends faster. Thanks to you, I was able to make some of the best friends that I have ever met and I was able to learn so much about Iola and how to not be an awful writer/photographer. You have shown me how awful of a procrastinator I am, but you have shown me that being an idiot and putting everything off is an easy fix. I cannot thank you enough for making these two years of writing about strangers and different things around the community so enjoyable. Thank you for everything, Bruce.

To all of the mailroom workers: I am so sorry, honestly. I love online shopping and I know that I have probably bothered you for two years straight, so thank you for putting up with my shopping problem.

To all of the maintenance workers and groundskeepers: You all do an amazing job at making the school look beautiful inside and out. Thank you all for everything you do.

Kussatz, pictured here with Imani Lemon, Gage Ruark, Adriana Nunez, Lindsey Temaat, and Cristal Macias shares her emotional story about finding true friends at Allen.

All of the lifelong friends I have made here in Iola, you guys mean the world to me. I remember my second week of my freshman year here, my roommate, Bailey Sprague, and I sat in our room crying to our moms about how we had no friends. Soon after that we became (somewhat) friends with our suitemates. After that we all became the best of friends, and I cannot thank all of you enough for making my first year one of the best years of my life. You guys were absolutely crazy, but you taught me true friendship (cheesy, I know.) Every one of you has a bright future and I am excited to come visit all of you and eat dinner in your nice houses one day.

Allen has brought me so many friends, but so has Sam and Louie’s in Iola. I applied as a server only because I was tired of asking my mom for money all the time. After about three months of being terrified of everyone, I made some of the best friends that I could even ask for. Thank you, Sam and Louie’s crew, for literally making me work every single day, but also making me love you guys and all of the regulars even more. (I have honestly been crying because I will miss my regulars so much, so if you’re a regular at Sam and Louie’s, don’t forget me. I’ll be back for some chicken alfredo someday.)

Iola, thank you for everything you have done for me these past two years. Thank you for every single friend, my boyfriend, my teachers and everyone that was put in my life during my time here. Although this town might seem tiny, it has made a massive impact on my life, and I cannot thank everyone enough.

My mom wasn’t lying when she said that college would be the best years of my life.

To My Friends:

Dear Lindsey Temaat, you are the most talented and strong willed woman I have ever met. You have made Allen County your home. Every single person here loves you and you deserve everything that the world has to give you. You are going to do great at UMKC and I can’t wait to see all of your successes and visit you in your expensive, messy house one day. Thank you for always keeping me in line and I will miss eating all of your granola bars whenever I came over.

Dear Cristal Macias, you’re the best friend and the best roommate all in one. I still can’t get over how much we are alike. This year we bonded so much more than I ever thought that we would. This past year was so much fun and I am so incredibly thankful that we were able to be best friends. I am excited to walk through the halls in Allen and see your amazing pictures. You’re going to do great things one day and if you don’t keep me updated on every single thing, I will happily drive to wherever you are and beat you up. Thank you for making this year so productive and so fun.

Dear Jacob Patterson, I cannot thank you enough for being the best friend ever. You made me gain 10 pounds because of Pizza Hut but I loved spending every second with you. You make me so happy and I am excited for what the future has in store for us. 

Dear Bailey Sprague, thank you for crying with me the first week of school when neither of us had any friends. We aren’t near as close as we were last year, but thanks to you we didn’t have to survive a whole new school alone. I am so proud of you for moving to Lawrence because as soon as you finally were all moved in there, I could instantly see how much happier you were and how you finally found your home. You became incredibly successful as soon as you moved and I am so excited to see all of your future endeavors. I’ll be ready for my brunch invite in 10 years at your way too expensive house.

Dear Imani Lemon, I’ll be honest with you chief, you made me so mad sometimes. Your will to make the world a better place is something that I have never seen before. I am so happy that Allen has accepted you so you can create a new you. You have impacted this place so much and I am excited to see all of your accomplishments one day.

Dear Adriana Nunez and Gage Ruark, You were the lives of the party last year. Ever since you guys left we went from a fun group of seven to the leftover five of us trying to bring our GPA’s up. Gage, you are an amazing dog dad so far and I am so happy you made the decision to go to Pittsburg because you are 400 times happier. Adriana, I love seeing how happy you are back home. Keeping track of all of your road trips to Texas and everywhere else is impossible but I love seeing all of the fun that you have had recently.

I miss you guys every single day but I am so proud of all of your accomplishments that you have made so far.