Struggles turn into successes in college
August 25, 2019
Dear new student,
Welcome to what may be the wildest, scariest, most challenging, most insightful and most wonderful four years of your life. Whatever perception American media has given you about college, throw it out the window. What you will quickly learn to be the concrete truth is this: College is whatever you desire it to be. That is one of the things that makes it so exciting. It allows you a new path to reinvent yourself into a person unique from the identity high school locked you into for four years. Going off to University gives you the opportunity to grow into the person you want to be.
College is not always parties and fun, however. It can absolutely be lonely, especially during those first few weeks in the dorms before friendships have solidified. That’s to be expected. Almost all college students go through it at some point or another. It is a part of growing up and growing into your new self. The hard times of school will help you learn new things and get to know yourself in a way you never could have before.
I speak from personal experience. Freshman year was an incredibly bumpy ride for me. I had some of my best times, as well as some of the worst in my life. I had relationship issues, problems with friends and stress from the new college-level courses. When May rolled around, I came out of the year a stronger and more mature person for the struggles I had overcome. The hard times I experienced then helped usher me into some of the best things in my life right now. I can personally tell you whatever adversity school throws at you, it will probably give you good times double that. Just make sure you take the time to give it a chance before you make snap judgments about the University or about any people you meet during your time here.
College could be where you meet your future spouse, your friends for life or a mentor who gives you a new passion for your field of study. These things can only be brought into your life if you keep an open mind and give the college an honest, full chance. It could genuinely change your future in an amazing way.
For those of you worried about academics, study hard but know when to take a break. Your grades are not worth damaging your mental health. Know when to stop and get help when you need it, whether it be in a therapeutic or an academic sense. Academic burnout is insanely real and will get you if you do not work to take care of yourself. Make friends in your classes and your major. When you wake up hungover on Friday morning, these contacts will be a lifesaver for those oh-so-valuable notes. Make sure to try your best, but also have fun. College is meant to be an enjoyable experience, too.
Remember this above all: Everyone’s college experience is different. If yours does not line up to the blueprint of what you expected it to be, that’s normal. Make sure to find the activities and studies you enjoy, and your college experience will be a fond one for years to come.
An excited junior