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Clemson University

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What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Finding the right college is all about finding a place you feel you'll fit in. Talk to the students and teachers about what happens at the school during classes and on the weekends. Find out what the students are like. Stay the night in a dorm, a little later in the semester (if it's fall), so you can see what the dorm life is like. Take a tour of the school, and most importantly, while on the tour make sure to relate everything you see (classrooms, dining halls, sports facilities) back to where the potential dorm you'll be living in is located. If you know you'll want to be focusing on your school work, make sure you find a school with an environment that will encourage that. If you want to focus on your social life, then don't worry about finding a school with a strict academic enviornment. If you can't find a student who doesn't love the school, then you're probably in the right place. AKA Clemson University.

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If I were able to go back in time and give myself one piece of advice regarding college life, it would be that everything works out the way it is supposed to in the end. As a high school senior I had my ideal college picked out from the start, but things ended up not working out. I finally made the decision to attend Clemson University, and now I could not imagine my life any other way. Words cannot express how strongly I feel about everything working out for the best. For example, if in fact I attended my first choice university, my life would be completely different. I would have a different set of friends, a different lifestyle and a different college experience overall. As long as you have faith that all things happen for a reason, and you keep your head held high even when things get you down, the transition to your college life will be an amazing and memorable experience and so will the rest of your college years.

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If I could go back in time and talk to myself as a high school senior I would tell myself to take school more serious and learn better study habits. College is so much harder than high school and we didn't listen in high school because we thought that we were already grown but it is so much harder than I thought it would be. I wish that I could go back in time because I would have planned my future better. My thoughts and actions as a teenager differ from my life now. I have wasted so much time in life, I should already be working in my career and living a great and prosperous life. Life is so hard without an education. People struggle everyday because they made bad choices and I do not want to go through life regretting not going to school and getting an education. If I couId go back in time, I would also tell myself to push myself to the limits, as far as I could go and never give up on my goals and dreams.

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My parents were very good with preparing me for college ever since I was in middle school. I knew that hardwork and dedication were key to success and in order for me to have a fulfilling future I needed to excell in school. I worked hard throughout high school to ensure that I would be able to receive an acceptance letter from the college of my choice. I was more than happy to achieve that goal;however, if I could go back in time and tell myself one piece of advice it would be to stop and enjoy people and life. While working hard in school, there are times where you overlook the joys of being alive. I learned at Clemson that grades are very important but life experiences are just as important. I have become more open to people, I have become happier, and I have grown as a person overall. Without Clemson University and the community that I am now surrounded by, I don't know if I would be the person I am today.

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Choose the school where you feel most at home and welcomed but that also has a wide variety of areas of study in which you are interested. The social environment in college is important to give you a means of relaxation and a break from studying, but the academic variety is also important since most college students change their minds during college about what they want to study and do with their lives after college. While in college, get involved in as many things that you find interesting as possible, but learn and maintain a balance between academic and non-academic endeavors. Academics are not all that matter, but they are significant in post-college pursuits. College is a time when you really discover and establish who you are as an individual, so don't hold back but push yourself to get involved in things that you are passionate about, try new things, and have the time of your life!

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I would tell myself to hang in there. In high school, I was a stellar student, possible too motivated. I would urge myself to seek lasting relationships, not just acquaintances. I have learned that academics is not everything. I graduated high school as valedictorian, but with just myself to congratulate. It was a truly lonely place, like staring in a mirror for four years. Now, I feel more balanced in a great university with people who share a passion for agriculture. In the beginning of my years at Clemson, I thought I could tackle education on my own, and I hit a rock bottom. But, I climbed out of that hole I dug with a renewed passion for people and learning. Grades are meaningless; acquiring functional knowledge is everything. As a child I never understood this statement, but now I know it all too well. The more I learn, the more I realize I do not know anything.

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When I was a high school senior, I had no idea what friendships and experiences waited for me in college. I decided to choose my college path based on the relationships I had made in high school. If I could go back in time, I would tell myself that a college decision is a personal decision. You must decide for yourself where you will feel at home and where you want to attend. After spending a year and half at Baylor University in Texas, I finally realized that I wanted to attend Clemson University, regardless of where my friends from high school were. If I would have taken my own advice to begin with, I would have only had one college transition, and would have saved myself several difficult experiences. High school seniors have a tough decision ahead of them, but if he or she decides on college based on their true ambitions, the school they choose will feel like home forever.

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Growing up in a hard-working lower class family if i could go back in time from school i would think twice about which schools i go to and how much i take out for loans. My parents work hard to keep me in school and can barley afford it. I love to study and I am very career focused, however knowing my financial background i know it's very hard to keep up with. If i had thought twice about how much money i take out in loans or even thought twice about going to a school that offered a few scholarships i know it'll me easier on me financially and most importantly my parents. Being in school is very important for my parents because they never had the opportunity to finish school. That is a huge factor to why i am holding on to get my degree and doctorate, i want to make them proud and show them it was all worth it and give them what they were unable to acheive.

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Finding the right college is not just about being able to afford it. It's about finding a place that you feel like you can call home because let's face it. When you start the college life, your chosen university becomes your home. You will spend more time there then you will at your parent's house. So finding the right college is about finding your new home. If you can fnd the place the gives you the same cozy warm feeling that your childhood home does, then you have found the right place. If you find your home, then you willbe comfortable and all your focus can be tuned into your school work and not on fitting it or trying to belong because you already will. Lastly, parents must understand that they need to support their students with their chocie because ultimatlely they are the ones who will be there 24/7 becuase after all there's no place like home.

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The advice I would give parents and students about finding the right college is to visit as many as you can. You will find colleges that you like and colleges that you don't, but both experiences will help you narrow down what you want in a college and where you will fit best. As for making the most of college, make sure you experience everything. Go to at least one sporting event in each sport, even if you don't like it. The atmosphere will blow you away! Get involved with clubs that you find interesting because you will find people who are interested in the same things you are interested in. Make an effort to walk around your campus as often as you can so you won't forget any of it after you graduate. And most importantly, make sure you study so you can stay in the place that you will come to love and remember as the best time of your life.

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