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Full Sail University

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

Dear High School Senior Self,Did you ever expect to become Pima Community College’s Student Government President? Graduated with an Associates Degree in Liberal Arts with a 3.4 GPA? What about moving to Florida to attend your dream school? Well guess what! All of those questions are just a few major accomplishments you have successfully achieved! Your exceptional work came from the idea to better yourself. Challenge yourself to get out and do something worthwhile! What can hurt? Taking the initiative to commit to challenges and expanding your knowledge towards leadership will be key to your future success. It might be rough but do not give up on your dreams no matter how many professors, family or friends discourage your dreams! Stand up, be strong and say, “Yes” to any opportunity that has been placed in your hands.In May 2013, you will complete nine months of your Music Business Degree at Full Sail University with a 4.0 GPA! You will be moving to Florida to continue your brilliant education. Always advise yourself throughout college and life, to take on challenges of education, leadership and diverse experiences. You will succeed in your dream career!Love, Future Self

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What do you want to be when you grow up? That is a question that we all have been asked at one point of our lives. The scary part about that question, especially as a high school senior is, what are you going to do with your life? Chasing your dreams is absolutely the right answer. With the right planning and preparation for college anyone can pursue their dreams. Planning for college is definitely the most crucial decisions a high school senior has to consider and decide on. Tuition, living expenses, books and supplies are all major roles that help the student decide on which college best suits his or her needs and education. Student loans can be very frightening, however, with the right guidance and understanding a student can afford the right school and education that he or she wants and deserves. There are multiple options out there that help provide a student?s way through college. Scholarships, grants, financial aid, and student loans are all available to students who qualify. Most importantly, start saving money now! The better the student becomes with managing and saving money will definitely help in making those dreams turn into a reality.

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As I step out of the DeLorean like Marty McFly from Back To The Future! I would first reminisce about the days of my high school experience. Knowing that the security guard at the front door would stop me from entering the school. I would wait outside until school was out. In those days, I use to walk to and from school. As I walk myself home from school. I would give myself lots of advice based on what I knew from my college experiences. Dayo, stay in the Upward Bound Program because it will help you to develop better study skills, and it will also be a good simulation of the college experience. Work hard to stay in and get into more of your high school advance placement classes, because they will give you college level work to prepare you for college. Try to get as much college experience and credit by utilize your educated mentors and college prep programs respectively, because that will help you cut cost, save time, and increase your Cumulative GPA in college. Developmental courses in college will cost you more money and take up time. I would also encourage myself because encouragement is empowerment!

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Dear Sean, I have the benefit of learning from mistakes you are about to make in your college selection that have given me the wisdom to guide you in this life decision. I chose the first college I went to because it was the least expensive option. The words, "you get what you pay for" have never rung truer. I did not learn what I had desired to learn. I had teachers that came to class and worked on their own freelance projects for whole semesters instead of teaching. I applied myself and read through the course books and learned what I could, but it was not the same as having an experienced mentor teach and guide me through projects. A free period is not free when you are paying to learn. After graduating with an Associate degree in Computer Animation, the career services department got me a job in manufacturing, and would not provide any more leads. They said they had fulfilled their responsibility to provide job leads though I did not work in my field. Understand that it is not enough to have a good “job placement” rate. Please, don't make this mistake. -Your older self.

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I have worked my whole life as a unskilled laborer. With the recent recession I became one of the many victims to fall into a unemployed status. After months of unsuccessful attempts to be re-employed it was clear that just having a high school diploma was no longer sufficent. I needed to improve my education level in order to obtain the edge needed to gain employment. The first step was to map out a game plan which included returning to school at a higher education institute. Since I have always had a passion for plants the natural choice was to major in agriculture. After reviewing several school potentials I decided upon applying and have been accepted for a AA degree in Landscaping and Nursery Technology at Anoka Tech with classes beginning on January 10, 2011. The school has a excellent program for my major as well as a high placement percentage. I have confidence that after graduating my potenial for improving and stabilizing my financial position will greatly improve as well as having the opportunity to present a positive impact in my community.

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If I could go back in time, I would tell myself don’t be afraid of anything, give your all in every single class, and mentality is important. Don’t be afraid to pick the brain of all your instructors, lab assistants, because, their combination of knowledge and skill in whatever the subject matter is, is invaluable. The extra time you spend gaining knowledge can and will be the defining moment of your career or job opportunity when you come face to face with that exact situation. There is a bonus to dedicating your self in this manner. And that is, not only do you gain the respect of your professors but you also create a connection that will be an open door into your career goal as well as a resource of knowledge that will help you to avoid pitfalls that are common among individuals trying to find there way. Mentally is another piece of advice I’d give myself. Your mind has to be serious to the degree that you wont allow anyone, anything, even yourself to get in your way of your goal. You have to know that anything is possible if you believe and work hard.

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College is definitely not just about yourself. I've always been preached to go to college, grauduate, just focus on your studies, and do good everything. Get good grades, get a good job, live happily ever after. Everyone preaches that, parents, teachers, friends, but in my opinion it's one of those half truths. If it were that easy, there would be so many success stories, granted there are a lot, there would be so many more. The fact is, college, dare I say, is not just about you. The pessimistic view on college is that it's hard to finish, not many people do it. While on the other hand if you look at it there are countless people who do finish, and mind you finish well, not just slip through the cracks. The key to being successful in my eyes? Networking. There is too much focus on "me" in college. Interaction with people in the same degree, or even not in the same degree can give you a head start on the real world. The world has enough yes men, what it needs more of are leaders, people who can collaborate and create innovative ideas with other people.

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I would say, "Valentina, don't give in to feeling the pressure to just attend any college just because everyone expects it of you. Know why and what you want to accomplish in your education pursuit so as to not waste valuable time and money chasing someone else's dream for you that is not your own. Take the time now to really take an honest look at yourself and connect with what you believe you really want to end up doing with your life. Define your true goal that fuels your passions. Research all the possibilities to become equipped, including opportunities in financial aide to help solve the lack of funds. You are being limited by other's not knowing or seeing a bigger picture for you. Find some help and support from people that are doing what you want to do for encouragement and information. Once you have a plan, stick to it! It may not be easy sometimes, but remember that you are beginning on your journey to end up not just to work to live, but to live in order to accomplish your life's work." This is just the beginning of that journey!

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Shannon, the high school senior, This is future Shannon. I am telling you now, pay attention and do your best. Assert yourself in all of your classes and make good use of your time and resources. It is so important to go to college and high school is your last chance for free education. Make the most of it. The real world is a tough place and without an education, good jobs are hard to find. Focus on what you love to do, what interests you the most and make your career decision based on that. It is always better to work smarter, not harder. It is also important to save your money. College is not cheap and without scholarships, you will be paying back student loans for a while. Work hard during high school and save every penny you earn. You don't need the nicest car, that comes later. Having some money starting out is better than having no money. Even if it only pays for books for one semester, that's money you won't have to finance. One last thing... you can do it, no matter what it is. Have confidence in yourself. Future Shannon

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To live without purpose is not to live at all. Without purpose, what would be our motivation to be alive? We would be mindless drones sulking around doing nothing if we did not have the drive to dowhat we feel we were made to do. Purpose is what makes us human beings latch on to dreams and what makes our short lives seem that much more precious. When you realize what your purpose or reason for living is, you put your all into making sure you excel whatever you think is the reason youwere put onto this world. You begin to think to yourself “It is always too soon to quit.” Feeling a sense of purpose help you realize that quitting get you nowhere. It is better to take whatever you are given because even through defeat, we learn something. When you quit, nothing is learned and you may never realize whether you would’ve succeeded. When you quit, it is a guaranteed defeat. Although we are not always on the winning side, having purpose pushes you to still see things through to the end. As humans, we'll try harder to succeed at whatever we put our minds to.

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